(navigation image)
Home American Libraries | Canadian Libraries | Universal Library | Community Texts | Project Gutenberg | Children's Library | Biodiversity Heritage Library | Additional Collections
Search: Advanced Search
Anonymous User (login or join us)
Upload
See other formats

Full text of "The Norwich cadets: a tale of the rebellion"

THE UNIVERSITY OF 

NORTH CAROLINA 

LIBRARY 




THE WILMER COLLECTION 

OF CIVIL WAR NOVELS 

PRESENTED BY 

RICHARD H. WILMER, JR. 




£iLMUiCOLU.Cii 



THE NORWICH CADETS: 



TALE I REBELLION. 



By REV. HOMER WHITE 

AUTHOR OF "'THE CAPTIVE BOY," ETC. 



ST. ALBANS, VT.: 

PUBLISHED BY ALBERT CLARKE 

1878 



hiui.-i._n according iht >i_.-i 1-.... bj 

. 'Am 1 . and _\ ; i. .--..- Clarke, 
■ Librarian -.! ('■■ 



THE NORWICH CADETS, 



CHAPTER I 



INTRODUCTORY. 




HE only military school of which Vermont can 
Jboast, or over could boast, with the exception 
.of that peripatetic school in which Ethan Allen 
fand Seth Warner were professors, is Norwich 

i University. 

It is worthy of note that after any war the 
people who have been engaged in it evince a 
decided taste for military knowledge. After the 
occasion has passed which called for such knowledge, they 
set about perfecting themselves in the art of war. In their 
fresh ardor they found military schools and organize volun- 
teer regiments with a patriotic determination to be pre- 
pared for the next struggle. But after a while men get 
tired of drilling, and as the quiet time of peace is pro 
longed they lose their interest in martial show, and the 
next war in which they are called to engage finds them 
again a nation of shopkeepers and farmers, equally ignor- 
ant of military tactics and of the principles and practice 
of gunnery. Such was eminently our situation at the be 
ginning of the late rebellion. At its close, when the danger 
was past, we began, according to this tendency of nature 
which I have spoken of, to beat our pruning hooks into 



603311 



4 THE NORWICH CADETS : 

spears and to learn war some more. Now, in consequence 
of this and of our late experience in war. we are as a peo- 
ple fairly versed in military science, but probably by the 
time we shall need this knowledge it "will be numbered 
among our lost acquirements. 

Norwich University was the product of the post bellum 
fever induced by our last war with Great Britain. It was 
established in the year 1820. Though now located at North- 
held, it was first and for many years in the town and village 
of Norwich, on the Connecticut liver and opposite Hanover, 
N. H., the seat of Dartmouth College. The river flowed 
between the two institutions of learning, but they were 
less than a mile distant from each other. The first head of 
the University was Capt. A. Partridge. Its course of study 
embraced more than the college curriculum generally does, 
and if its graduates became thoroughly proficient in one 
half of the things they were expected to learn, they left its 
walls accomplished soldiers. The institution soon became 
popular and flourishing, and attracted pupils from nearly 
every State in the Union. 

Norwich has furnished some names for the roll of fame 
— names of which Vermont is and ever will be proud. 
High among these stands that of the gallant Ransom, who 
was at one time president of the University, and who lost 
his life at the beginning of a glorious career in the war 
with Mexico. 

At the time at which our story opens, 1S59, the Univer- 
sity, with its veteran brick walls somewhat weather-beaten, 
stood as the most prominent object in the quiet village of 
Norwich. There were only about forty cadets, of all class- 
es at the University, for the reason that the country had 
enjoyed a long interval of peace, and a knowledge of Har- 
dee's Tactics was not considered the most valuable sort of 
information for a young man to possess in beginning the 
campaign of life. Had our prudent countrymen foreseen 



A TALE OF THE REBELLION. 9 

the nearness of the rebellion, the University would doubt- 
less have been crowded with martial youth in search of mar 
iial knowledge. 

Most of the cadets were Green Mountain boys though 
there were some from distant states, but all were youths so 
fnll of war instinct that the most profound peace could not 
banish their dreams of war. No dress seemed to them so 
beautiful as the army bine ; burnt powder had a delightful 
odor ; and the roar of guns and the rattle of drums were 
music to their ears. 

There are such men everywhere, born soldiers, who 
have an innate scorn of peaceful pursuits, and long for the 
clash of aims and the din of battle ; who leave the plow 
field for the " field of honor" with all the alacrity of Put- 
nam, though without half the cause ; men who make war, if 
they do not find it, like the fierce son of the shrinking 
Werner in Byron's tragedy. Fallen man in a state of na- 
ture is not the simple, inoffensive creature which Rousseau 
makes him, but a blood-thirsty animal delighting in carnage. 
He makes war upon all other creatures, though not to satis- 
fy the demands of hunger, and even destroys those of his 
own kind for the mere pleasure of shedding blood. 

At the same time brave men who have a passion for 
arms and who glory in battle, often possess some of the 
noblest traits of character. Their virtues light up some 
pages of the dark history of war and conquest, and make 
their battles something better than the struggles of brutes 
or the strifes of fiends. 

Though civilization, in its refining process, has taken 
the courage out of most of us, we have still enough of sav- 
age nature left in us to feel a genuine admiration for cour- 
age in others. Though we may be disinclined to adventure 
our own lives by walking into a forest of bayonets, even 
for the most righteous cause, yet the most cowardly of us 
all respect the brave man and admire his gallant deeds. 



G THE NORWICH CADETS: 

" Peace hath her victories no less than war," but peace- 
is tame and humdrum. War has charms of a more exciting 
character, and the bare recital of its deeds has power to 
accelerate the pulse of the most determined Quaker. Wc 
read the war chapters of a nation's history with the great- 
est gusto, and we delight in the military achievements of 
the world's heroes from Ulysses of Ithaca to Ulysses of 
Galena. 

During the late civil war Norwich University sent a 
larger proportion of her graduates into the field than did 
any other college in the country. And she furnished for 
the volunteer army five Major Generals, twenty-seven Colo- 
nels and a large number of officers of lower grade. They 
did valiant service for their country, and we believe that in 
reading some of their adventures and in recalling some of 
the events of the great struggle for the Union, we shall be 
doing no more than justice to the heroism of our gallant 
State, while we incite in our readers a deeper love of their 
country and a more chivalrous devotion to its honor. We 
may not convince them all that it is sweet to die for one's 
country, but they will at least feel that the honors showered 
upon the head of the patriot-soldier are honors well de- 
served. 

In 1859 the Rev. Dr. Bournes was President of Nor- 
wich and had been so for ten years. He was a man of peace 
by profession and as well versed in canon law as in cannon 
balls. It may seem strange that a military academy should 
have a clerical head, but it is perhaps well to maintain an 
equilibrium of forces. There was plenty of latent lire 
among the cadets and they were ready at any time to ex- 
plode, like so many cans of nitro -glycerine ; but the cassock 
generally kept the mastery of the Cossack, and the science 
of war was peacefully pursued. Certain it is that the boys 
would as soon have thought of bearding " the Douglass in 
, his hall " as the " Doctor " in his study. 



A TALE OF THE REBELLION 7 

But the strictest order did not always reign in the bar 
racks, nor was it always quiet on the Connecticut. From 
time immemorial, that is to say from the foundation of iln 
University, a feud had raged between the cadets and tin 
students of Dartmouth college across the river, and many 
raids and encounters had taken place, in regard to which 
and the heroes engaged in them, tradition had much to say. 
The cadets were inferior in numbers to their classical an 
tagoirists, but they were rilled with martial ardor and utter 
ly unwilling to admit that the stylus is mightier than the 
sword. The prevailing opinion among them seemed to be 
that Dartmouth must be destroyed. The discipline of the 
University prevented the attempt, by any well organized 
expedition, to accomplish this favorite object, but it was 
not sufficient to restrain individual cadets from hostile in- 
cursions into the enemy's country. Bristling with daggers 
and revolvers which they never had a serious thought of 
using, two or three together would cross the river at night, 
either by the bridge or by boat, and parade the streets of 
Hanover or penetrate even to " Tempe's pleasant vale 
with a marked disregard of the dangers they incurred. 
Frequently they succeeded in provoking hostilities, and then 
they displayed the gallantry which afterward distinguished 
them upon larger fields. When greatly outnumbered, as 
they usually were, they would fall back to the river with a 
celerity to which Xenophon's famous retreat furnishes no 
parallel. If they found the bridge disputed they took to 
boats, or if these were not to be found, a flank movement, 
up or down the river to a fording place, was executed in a 
masterly manner, and the barracks gained sometime before 
reveille. The casualties were always few, but the fun and 
glory were considerable. 



THE NORWICH CADETS 



CHAPTER II. 



TOM AND BILL HOSTILITIES WITH DARTMOUTH 3TUDENTS- 

CONDONS NAVAL ENGAGEMENT. 



-MAT 




U R two heroes, w r ho were chums and insep- 
arable companions, were known and always des- 
ignated by their fellow cadets as Tom and Bill. 
They were from different sections of the Union, 
^and the opposites of each other in personal ap- 
pearance. They had been born and reared in 
very different circumstances and could hardly be 
expected to have much sympathy the one with 
the other, or to care for a very close fellowship ; but the 
strong bond of union between them was the unshrinking 
courage and love of adventure which each perceived and 
appreciated in the other. They were, as we have said, 
inseparable companions, and they were also devoted friends. 
Tom Lyon was the son of a Vermont farmer and ac- 
customed to labor with his hands without being at all 
ashamed of it. He was of the Anglo Saxon type, brown 
hair, blue eyes and fair skin. Though only of medium 
height he was compactly built, with muscles like bundles of 
whip-cord, and by far the strongest man at the University. 
This fact coupled with another, equally well-known, that he- 
had never been seen to exhibit fear even in the most trying 
situations, won for him the hearty respect and admiration 
of those who reverence physical strength and courage. But 



A TALE OF THE REBELLION. 9 

he bad other and more worthy claims to respect ; his classi- 
cal attainments were not inferior to those of the average 
"junior" on the other side of the river; he had strong 
convictions of right, was honorable and high minded, 
patriotic and true. His word could not be justly questioned 
and never was with impunity. Conlidcnce reposed in him was 
a sacred trust, never betrayed, and taken altogether he was a 
noble specimen of the Green Mountain Boy. He was, how- 
ever, still a boy, not yet twenty-one, and with the animation 
of youth he had also some of its follies. 

Bill or William Wolfe, our other hero, was the son of 
a Georgia planter and brought up in aristocratic idleness. 
He was of slender form, with dark hair and eyes and swarthy 
complexion. There was a strain of Spanish blood in his 
veins and he had that adventurous and chivalrous disposition 
which distinguished the conquerors of Mexico and Peru. 
Restless, and always longing for change of scene and excite- 
ment, his wealthy and indulgent father had permitted him 
to rove at will, insisting only that he should at least make 
a pretence of seeking an education ; and he had been an 
inmate of several Northern as well as Southern schools and 
colleges, acquiring in his perigrinations a considerable fund 
of book-knowledge together with much other information. 
At Norwich his liberality and his various accomplishments, 
among which was skill in the use of arms and of the less 
deadly gloves, quickly made him a favorite among the cadets 
and introduced him to the favor and friendship of Tom 
Lyon. With a nice sense of honor and a haughty temper, 
he was easily offended, and then there was observable a 
nervous twitching about the eyes and a growing blackness 
of the face which betokened mischief. Very quick in his 
movements, much stronger than he appeared to be, and 
recklessly brave, he was an antagonist not lightly to be 
encountered. There was no one at the University who 
could meet him with any chance of success, with the ex- 

B 



10 THE NORWICH CADETS : 

ception of his sworn friend Tom Lyon. And in this case it 
was the superior strength of the North, and that alone. 
Avhich could overcome the South. 

To say that young Wolfe was not fond of hostile 
encounters per se without regard to the occasion of them, 
would be untrue ; but it would be equally untrue to say 
that he ever sought a quarrel when the advantage was 
evidently in his favor. He w r as too nobly brave to contend 
with any one plainly weaker than himself. His battles, 
which were numerous, were always with an enemy superior 
either in strength or numbers, and hence he usually came 
out of them severely beaten. But no amount of beating 
could beget in him a love of peace. He w 7 as a born con- 
troversialist, w r ho chose the sword rather than the pen with 
which to present his.arguments and convince his opponents. 

These pictures of our heroes are not fancy sketches, 
but drawn from a vivid recollection. We may not all ap- 
prove of such pugnacious characteristics as I have delin- 
eated, but we know that they exist, and that there would 
be many blank pages in history if the record of the events 
proceeding from such characteristics were to be blotted 
out. We shall follow our heroes to more noble helds of 
action than school-boy quarrels, and it will be seen in fiction 
as it is to be found in fact, that those who love war for 
war's sake are generally those who excel in it, and that in a 
righteous cause the instinct for battle becomes an instru- 
ment of good. 

It w r as after the arduous duties of a summer's day — 
recitations, drill and the evening mess — that Tom and Bill 
sat in what they called their den, leisurely engaged in filling- 
it with smoke which they drew from a couple of pipes. 
Occasionally they glanced through the blue atmosphere at 
each other, apparently waiting for a suggestion in regard to 
what next. Nothing was said by either for some minutes, 
but before the quiet became painful it was disturbed by the 



\ TALE Ml TITF. REBELLION. 



11 



sound of heavy footsteps. Then the door was pushed open 
without ceremony and in stalked the gigantic and loud 
voiced cadet, Mat Condon. His name was Martin Van 
Buren, but it was familiarly abbreviated to Mat. His head 
towered over six feet aloft and was covered with long 
shaggy yellow hair, giving him the appearance of a lion 
rampant, He prided himself upon this appearance and his 
prodigious strength, and wished to be regarded as another 
Cceur de Leon. But the lion heart was not in his bosom, 
and whenever he was brought to the test he was sure to be 
discovered like the fabled ass in the lion's skin. But he was 
the poet of the University, and had written and could sing 
in a roaring manner the song of " the Old South Bar- 
racks, O," and being a jolly companion and perfectly harm- 
less in spite of his mammoth proportions, he was patronized 
by our two heroes and afforded them much amusement. 

" Hello ! boys, what are you so still for?'' cried the new- 
comer as he planted himself in the centre of the smoke- 
clouded room, like Mt. Mansfield in a fog. 

" Well," replied Tom in his deliberate manner, tt as we 
didn't see any necessity for making a noise, we concluded 
to spare the exertion.'" 

"My collossal friend," said Bill in his blandest tones, 
" please moor yourself to that stool and tell us how many 
men you have killed since breakfast," 

" Diem perdidi ! not even one. 

But a field of the dead rushes red on my sight. 
For the students of Dartmouth are spoiling for 
fight." 

" Now my brave Falstaff with the lion head, give us a 
prose translation of that " said Tom, " for I see that your 
big skin. is full of something new." 

* l My dear boy," returned Condon, I grieve for you and 
I always sing my sorrows. But the fact is, a certain 
pugnacious sophomore has hurled his gauntlet across the 
river and expresses a particular desire that you should pick 
it up." 



12 THE NORWICH CADETS: 

" All ! indeed, that is refreshing intelligence. Yon 
shall be rewarded." 

" Couldn't the gentleman toss over one apiece for us ?" 
inquired Bill, feeling that he had been slighted. 

" He thinks that one hand is enough for both of you, 
and therefore used only one glove." 

Bill sprang to his feet at this and buttoning his coat up 
to the chin, secured about him the silver hilted dagger 
which he always carried, and began pacing the room cap in 
hand. The cooler blooded Vermonter smiled at these 
evidences of excitement, and addressing his chum by the 
affectionate appellation of " Willie," requested him to have 
another pipe. 

" No, thank you, I have got to throw a pontoon across 
the Connecticut to-night, so that the Doctor can lead his 
troops over in the morning to attack the town. 

" Wouldn't you accept the services of a couple of 
volunteers ?" inquired Tom. 

"Yes." 

" Come on then, Condon," said Tom rising and putting 
on his cap ; w r e shall need you as guide. If it isn't very 
dark we shall be able to follow your white face without 
difficulty." 

" I am w^th you my gallant boys," exclaimed the poet, 
striking an attitude, " till — ■ 

" The enemy heaves in sight." Tom finished the 
sentence. 

The three sallied out together and avoiding the guards 
took their way to the river. As they neared the bridge 
Condon called a halt. 

" I pride myself on my generalship," said he, " and I 
can't bear to throw away the lives of such good soldiers as 
you. Now it is very easy to get into Hanover, but when 
we wish to get out we may find this bridge barricaded. So 
my beasts of prey, to make our retreat secure, if 3 T ou will go 



A TALE OP THE REBELLION. 13 

ahead, I will go and get a boat and row over and wait for 
you at the landing." 

" No head but yours would have thought of that," said 
Bill. 

" Do so by all means," said Tom. 

Condon looked pleased that his companions so readily 
fell in with his plan, which was first conceived to secure his 
own safety, and walked away with as much energy and im- 
portance as though it were the night of crossing the 
Delaware and upon him rested the responsibility of finding 
transportation for the troops. 

The two friends laughed quietly over this desertion. 

" That is the last we shall see of him " remarked Bill. 

" Big dogs are not the bravest," philosophized Tom ; 
" but he may come over after all." 

" If he starts at all, he is more likely to drop anchor in 
the middle of the stream where he will be out of harm's 
reach from either shore." 

With another laugh at poor Mat's want of courage and 
his futile endeavors to conceal it, the two cadets walked on 
over the bridge and entered the village of Hanover. With- 
out intending to provoke any quarrel, they were determined 
to let their presence be known, and were prepared to repel 
any assault, whether made by the pugnacious sophomore 
before mentioned, or by others. They were personally well 
known, but not regarded with unmixed love, for the reason 
that on several former occasions they had difficulties with 
different students and had generally borne away what 
laurels there were. 

After visiting two or three places of student-resort, 
they found themselves receiving as much attention as they 
desired. Their very presence there was a challenge and so 
received. The excitement momentarily increased. Leaving 
the refreshment saloon, at that time kept by a colored 
gentleman who dispensed oysters and root beer to hungry 



14 THE NORWICH CADETS: 

and thirsty undergraduates, the two cadets proceeded to 
the Campus followed by a noisy and not very respectful 
crowd. They paid no attention however to those behind 
them nor to the uncomplimentary remarks which were made 
for their ears, but walked along unconcernedly as though 
they were the only persons abroad. 

Perceiving that some more decided demonstration 
must be made, the crowd pressed, closed, and finally the 
champion of the sophomore class, a tall fellow named 
Staples, brushing up to Bill's side laid his hand on the 
Georgian's coat and cried ont — 

•• See ! what pretty buttons !" 

There was a laugh from his companions, but it quickly 
subsided as they saw their champion sprawling on the 
ground, sent there by one quick blow from the insulted 
cadet. Then they rushed in a body on the now furious 
southerner. 

" One at a time, gentlemen," said Tom cooly. as he 
knocked down the foremost of the assailants. " My friend 
mil meet any one. of you in fair fight." 

'•Or a dozen of them " cried Bill with a face as black 
as Othello's. 

The battle now, became general. The cadets received 
some hard blows, but they repaid them with interest. Once 
Bill was down,. but Tom fought over his body till he could 
gain his feet. Doubtless the battle would have gone against 
our heroes in the end, but suddenly the President of the 
College appeared in the midst of the combatants, calling 
excitedly for order. ' 

The students no sooner saw him than the}- fled to avoid 
his recognition. The cadets, saluting him respectfully, 
marched away leaving the astonished President sole oc- 
cupant and master of the lately contested field. 

Our two heroes directed their steps to the river. Soon 
becoming aw T are that they were pursued. Bill expressed a 



A TALE 0E THE REBELLK »X. . 15 

desire to turn back, but yielding to his friend's request lie 
hastened with him to the landing when' they hoped but 
hardly expected to find Condon. 

Tlmt individual had indeed procured a boat and an 
inoffensive fellow to row it and made a landing on the New 
Hampshire shore. When he heard the sound of hurrying 
footsteps and angry .shouts he suspected the cause, and fearful 
of being himself sacrificed if he waited to Buccor his friends, 
he jumped into the boat and seizing one oar while his com 
panion took the other, pushed out a few rods into the river 
just as Tom and Bill reached the shore. 

They saw they were too late and running a short dis- 
tance up the stream secreted themselves Their pursuers 
soon after reached the landing they had just left, and see- 
ing a boat with two persons in it, naturally supposed that 
their foes had escaped them. They shouted after the 
fleeing Condon, daring him to return, and one of them 
having a revolver, fired several shots purposely striking the 
water at a safe distance from the boat. 

At this the frightened boatman whom Condon had 
hired stopped rowing and proposed to return in obedience 
to the order of the firing party. 

" Row for your life " screamed the frantic giant, draw- 
ing a huge knife and nourishing it wildly. 

" They will shoot us if w T e don't go back." 

"Fear nothing but me. You carry Condon and his 
fortunes." 

The boat sped on its way and the baffled students left 
the spot. 

When all was quiet Tom and Bill emerged from their 
hiding place, where they had greatly enjoyed the spectacle 
of Condon's terror, and crossing the bridge unmolested, 
peacefully pursued their way home. 



16 



THE NORWICH CADETS: 



CHAPTER III 




CONDON S AD VENTURE THE BATTLE OF TORN COATS — A POLITICAL 

DISCUSSION THE GATHERING STORM. 

H E next morning Mat had a wonderful tale to 
tell of his adventures by flood and field and of 
the narrow escape from death which he had in 
contending single handed w r ith the chivalry of 
Dartmouth. Our two heroes heard his report 
with interest, and Bill moved that it be engrossed 
and placed in the archives of the University. 

After this affray quiet reigned on the Con- 
necticut for the space of three w r eeks. But this peace could 
not continue. The " Parties " (as the Dartmouth students 
were called) smarted under their late defeat, and only 
waited for an opportunity to wreak their vengeance on 
some one or more . of the cadets without being at the cost 
and danger of making a hostile incursion into Vermont for 
that purpose. This opportunity soon presented itself. 

Condon, whose political and martial qualities we have 
bef jre had occasion to notice, afforded the casus belli this 
time. Not contented with having stolen the title and 
parodied the favorite song of the cadets called the " old 
south barracks," a really meritorious production written by 
Harry Dent, a former cadet; and not satisfied with the 
many scrapes into which he had been the means of leading 
his fellow students, was now the " cause, means and instru- 



A TALE OF THE REBELLION. 17 

ment " of bringing on what we shall call the last battle of 
Dartmouth, or the battle of Torn Coats. Trusting to his 
fear inspiring proportions and appearance, ami to a peace- 
able demeanor, he ventured one Saturday to pass over to 
Hanover alone and unprotected. 

His arrival in the village was quickly known and he 
was soon the object of almost universal attention. The 
Darties welcomed this opportunity for revenge, and with 
Staples at their head surrounded him. 

Condon grew pale with fear and all his great strength 
left him. He tried to look courageous and walk out of the 
net, but as his reputation was not altogether unknown, they 
stopped him and laughed at his frowns and hard words. 
He cried " peace," but they told him there was none ; he 
begged for mercy and they hissed him. 

His knees smote together as Staples fiercely approach- 
ed him. The boys enjoyed his terror. But they were too 
manly to think of doing any bodily injury to one so com- 
pletely in their power. 

Staples seized him by his claw hammer coat-tails, and 
deliberately ripped Condon's outer garment up to the col- 
lar. That alone held the two halves of the coat together. 

With shouts and screams of laughter the " Darties " 
opened their ranks and permitted the humbled cadet to 
march out of their midst. 

Holding his coat together behind, as well as he could 
with one hand, Condon fairly ran, followed by peals of 
laughter which sounded like volleys of artillery in his ears, 
and stopped not till he was safely on the other side of the 
river. He tried to gain his room unseen, but in this he failed. 

Lyon and Wolfe, who were walking together, met him, 
and their laughter at his ridiculous appearance seemed to 
be the echo of that from which he had fled. 

" Is that the newest style— the regulation pattern ? " 
inquired the first. 



18 THE NORWICH CADETS : 

* ; Why don't you move your buttons around if you are 
going to have your coat open on that side ? " said the other. 

Poor Condon tried to tell how he had caught his coat 
on a fence post, but his scared look did'not confirm his talc, 
and he was finally obliged to confess to part of the truth. 
He told, how T ever, how he had been overpowered by num- 
bers, and after a desperate struggle, he had been abused in 
the manner they saw. 

Though greatly amused at Condon's mishap, the honor 
of the University w r as at stake, as our friends thought, and 
they determined upon retaliation. 

The story was told ; there was a private meeting of the 
cadets and to the number of forty-five they agreed that the 
disgrace should be wiped out. 

A neighboring wood-pile was laid under contribution 
for weapons. They sawed the four foot limbs in two ; bored 
gimlet holes hi one end ; tied in a loop of small cord and 
threw the loop over the wrist, as cavalry men wear their 
swords in action. 

This gave each man a neat club of two feet in length 
with a sword-knot to prevent him from losing it, should it 
be knocked out of his hand. 

With these formidable weapons (similar to a police- 
man's club) they marched to Hanover, though Condon was 
not among them. He complained of being unwell, and at 
the time of departure was snugly tucked up in bed, with 
numerous bottles of medicine on a stand at his bedside. 

When the cadets reached Hanover they drew up on 
the college green, and forming a hollow square (single rank 
eleven men on a side), they gave three groans for Dart- 
mouth, followed by three cheers for Norwich University. 

They did not have to wait long for the enemy to ap- 
pear. The Darties swarmed from every direction and 
assembled on all sides of them. 

Among the cadets was an Ohio boy named Evarts 



A TALE OF THE REBELLION. 19 

(afterwards a Colonel of Volunteers) whose weight was two 
hundred and thirty-five pounds and whose strength and 
courage corresponded well with his weight. A blacksmith's 
anvil of ordinary size was a toy in his huge hands. When 
the cadets formed the square under command of Adjutant 
Lyon, Evarts refused to fall in, and as the Dartmouth men 
pressed close up, he seized the first w T ho came near him by 
the shoulders, whirled him around, and tore his coat from 
skirt to collar. He followed this thing up by treating half 
a dozen others in the same manner, before hostilities on the 
part of the square were actually opened. 

Lyon marched his little force first in one direction and 
then in another, wherever the crowd appeared densest, 
making a path wherever they went. The advantage which 
the cadets possessed over their antagonists, consisted in 
their military organization and their consequent ability to 
strike as a unit against an unorganized mob. 

Stones, brickbats and sticks fell among them, but rarely 
inflicted any serious damage. After a time the fall of 
missiles slackened ; and the attention of the enemy seemed 
to be drawn toward an opposite section of the green. 
Lyon seized the opportunity to give his command a breath- 
ing spell by ordering an "in place, rest." 

The cadets had only drawn a few free breaths, however, 
when they saw Evarts standing alone with his arms folded, 
about a hundred feet in front of them, while immediately 
beyond him stood the Dartmouth host, evidently watching 
and considering his probable movements, and meditating 
his overthrow. 

Presently two men appeared approaching him from 
either side ; a third came up in front and dared him by 
gestures ; a fourth stole to the rear of Goliah. Evarts 
sprang for the man in front, and at the same time the three 
men in flank and rear sprang upon him. The giant went 
down. 



20 THE NORWICH CADETS i 

" Tention ! " shouted Adjutant Ljou ; u forward, double 
quick ! " 

In half a minute the square marched over the five 
struggling men, halted and held them in the center. 
Evarts sprang to his feet, caught each man singly and rip- 
ped up his coat. 

" Glory enough for one day ! To the Barracks, double 
quick, march ! " exclaimed Lyon, and the cadets ran unmo- 
lested down the hill to Vermont, Evarts and AVolfe bringing 
up the rear and earnestly longing to be pursued. 

Their longing was not gratified. They were not pur- 
sued, but gained the barracks in safety, and indulged in 
great rejoicings over their victory. 

Condon was visibly better as he heard the news, and 
the next day appeared as well as ever. 

But more important events than these we have describ- 
ed, were in the near future, and were soon to be unfolded 
not only to the gaze of the cadets, but to the whole country 
and the world. 

The presidential campaign of 18G0 was a very exciting- 
one because the people felt that greater interests than usual 
w T ere involved in it, if indeed the life of the nation was not 
at stake. And after the election was over, the excitement, 
instead of subsiding as it usually does after such an event, 
rather increased. During the winter the threats of seces- 
sion advocates grew louder and more frequent — the mutter- 
ings of the gathering storm burst upon the country 
with the thunder of the guns directed against Fort Sumter. 

In politics Tom and Bill could not agree, but they 
could do what many older heads cannot do, they could dis- 
cuss questions about which they differed, without exhibit- 
ing any personal animosity or feeling any diminution of 
their friendship. The Vermonter was a staunch republican 
and anti-slavery man, a firm supporter of Lincoln, while 
the Georgian was a Breckinridge democrat and a pro slavery 



A TALE OF THE REBELLION. 2l 

man. The former was a disciple of Webster and believed 
that " We the people " had granted to the general govern- 
ment greater powers than any that were reserved. The 
latter was a disciple of Calhoun and believed in state rights. 
If he must choose between Georgia and the United States, 
he chose Georgia as having the stronger claim upon his 
loyalty. 

Many a wordy contest did the two cadets have with 
each other, but prejudice with them as with most men, was 
stronger than reason, and they usually ended as far apart 
as when they began. 

" Why should not the South have its independence, if 
it desires it? " inquired Bill. " You believe in the right of 
revolution." 

" In some cases ; but I don't believe in treason," an- 
swered Tom. 

" That is dodging the point. Secession is revolution." 

"Governments are instituted among men for the 
benefit of the governed, and when they become destructive 
of this end, it is the right of the people to alter or abolish 
them. So I believe, and I believe that an oppressed people is 
justified in revolution or secession without a cause. The 
south claims the right to withdraw at will from the Union, 
with or without a cause. But secession is not revolution ; 
it is ten thousand times worse ; it is an anarchy. You do 
not wish to alter or abolish our form of government because 
it is an objectionable one. You are willing it should re- 
main, but you wish to set up another government within 
our boundaries, and I am sure that if you do, you will 
model it after that to which you will have proved traitor, 
so well, in fact do you like it. Revolutionize the whole 
country if there is any cause for it." 

" All governments derive their just powers from the 
consent of the governed, you know " said Bill, 

" That is true, but Jefferson never meant that it was 



22 THE NORWICH CADETS: 

necessary to have the consent of every one of the governed. 
The consent of the governed is the consent of the majority, 
and that the national government possesses. Twenty mil- 
lions of people are devoted to their government." 

" With some exceptions." 

" While only a part of eight millions demand a change, 
and shall they rule the majority ?" 

"Let them rule themselves ; it is all they ask." 

" We will, but in a constitutional w T ay. If every 
minority at the close of an election were allowed to secede, 
there would soon be nothing to secede from. Now if these 
malcontents were equally distributed over the wdiole 
country, they would be insignificant. Public opinion and 
the ballot-box would be sufficient remedies against their 
disorganizing tendencies. But the being all in a body to- 
gether, in one section of the country, gives them an im- 
portance which their numbers do not deserve. Our govern- 
ment is one of their choice and adoption, and it is formed 
on the principle that the majority should rule. The 
majority ought to rule ; there can be no free government 
without it." 

" Why has not the South as good a right to secede 
from the United States, as the United Colonies had to 
secede from Great Britain in 1776 ?" 

" Because her people have not the same cause. They 
offer none to the world. They have no decent respect to 
the opinions of mankind, and declare no cause for separa- 
tion. Our fathers had numerous causes and they boldly 
declared them. They petitioned and remonstrated first, 
and the appeal to arms was the last resort. You southerners 
have nothing to say which you are not ashamed to embody 
in a declaration to the world, and there is a peaceful remedy 
for every just complaint that you can have." 

" The question is who is to decide whether a people lias 
cause to rebel. England did not think her American Col- 



A TALE OF TIIE REBELLION. 23 

onies were right ; you don't think the South is right. The 
rebels in 1776 thought differently, as they do now.'' 

u The two cases are dissimilar. In one case there were 
real grievances ; hi the other there are none, and further, 
the colonies occupied a country which by their own toils 
and sufferings they had redeemed from the wilderness and 
its savage inhabitants — a country of their own, which was 
far removed from the ruling power in whose counsels they 
had no voice. They were on another continent. They did 
not set up a government in a corner of England. Even if 
the rule of England had been mild and just, it is impossible 
in the nature of things, and contrary to reason and natural 
justice that a country like this should long be subject to the' 
sway of a little island across the ocean. But you would 
establish a nation within a nation. You have about the 
same right to secede that Yorkshire has. If the Southern- 
ers or the Yorkshh-emen don't like their government, let 
them leave the country. They have no right to dictate to a 
majority what sort of government there shall be, or wheth- 
er there shall be two governments or one." 

"Revolutionists are always hi a minority. If they 
were not they would not have to resort to revolution. The 
American colonies, taking the whole British Empire into 
consideration (and they were a part of it) were in a much 
greater minority than the Southerners are now in ; and I 
don't see that a little water thrown between affects the ques- 
tion of right in the least." 

"Water is a natural boundary of nations." 

" Mountains are another, but you wouldn't see it, if 
the country west of the Rocky mountains was to rebel." 

" No ; we won't permit the establishment of any new 
government within the territory of the United States. Un- 
der a free government like ours, voluntarily accepted at 
first, there can be no cause for rebellion. If the people * 
don't like their government, they have the power to alter it 



24 THE NORWICH CADETS: 

peaceably. The colonies did not have that power, nor any 
part of it. 

" You talk well, but can you light ? " said Bill with a 
grim smile. 

"That you will have a chance to prove if you go on.'' 
" Success will make noble patriots of us rebels." 
" If you wait for- transformation, you will die dishon- 
ored traitors." 

" Plainly, Tom, secession is the only salvation for slav- 
ery. If we remain it is doomed ; if we go out we may pre- 
serve it. It is woven into the fabric of our society. We 
are born and bred in it and like it better than your system 
of so-called free labor, and think it the best condition of 
labor both for whites and blacks, so long as we have the 
negroes and cannot be rid of them. In fact all enforced 
labor, whether of poverty or the lash, is slavery. We find 
the institution of slavery to be both pleasant and profitable 
to us ; many of your most prominent northern divines tell 
us it is scriptural and right, and we are bound to maintain 
it either within or without the Union." 

After this manner their discussions usually proceeded 
and ended. Both were unconsciously pleased at the 
prospect of Avar, though they knew that when it came it 
would find them arrayed as enemies against each other. 
Darker and darker grew the threatening war-cloud which 
overhung the country. Sober patriots who knew how great 
a loss to them, their children and the world, would be the 
loss of the Union, grew grave and heavy-hearted at the 
prospect. Others thought there was needless alarm ; that 
the sky would clear in a few months and that then we 
should go on again in our old way of peace and prosperity. 
No one fully anticipated the greatness of the impending 
conflict. But still the news from the South grew daily of a 
more warlike character. Daily did distinguished men 
previously honored for their ability and patriotism, fall 



A TALE OF THE REBELLION. 25 

away from the support of the government and throw them- 
selves into the ranks of its enemies. The Union seemed to 
be dropping to pieces and fading away like some beautiful 
structure in a dream, to the surprise of those who knew 
that its stones were cemented with the blood of its builders, 
and expected it to stand. The Cabinet dissolved by 
resignation. Its rebel element withdrew after doing all 
the damage it could, to join the secession movement. Its 
loyal element, in the person of the venerable Cass, withdrew 
in disgiist at the non-coercion policy of President 
Buchanan. 

South Carolina seceded Dec. 20. 1860, and the an- 
nouncement of the fact in the House of Representatives of 
the Congress of the United States was received with clap- 
ping of hands by a few secessionists. Major Anderson was 
fighting against starvation in Charleston harbor. The 
nation, like a headless trunk, remained passive under insults 
and injuries innumerable, raising no hand to defend its life 
against the blows of its would-be assassins. 

New interest attached to the drill at the University and 
there was more hard study among the cadets of those 
branches of knowledge pertaining to war than the pro- 
fessors had witnessed for many a year. 

Cadet Wolfe remained at the University, a hard student 
and outwardly loyal, until Georgia seceded, January 2, 1861. 
Then he transferred his allegiance from the national govern- 
ment to that of his native State and made his preparations 
to return home and take his position in the ranks of the 
gathering Southern chivalry. 

He bade farewell to his companions, with less eloquence 
perhaps, but with more feeling, than Jefferson Davis ex- 
hibited in retiring from his place in the United States 
Senate, and wringing the hand of Tom Lyon while tears 
sprang to their meeting eyes, he departed for Washington, 



26 THE NORWICH CADETS '. 

where his sister was at school, with the purpose of escorting 
her to their father's house. 

On his arrival home he was received with a warm wel- 
come, as were all the returning sons of the South, and very 
soon thereafter he received a captain's commission in a 
Georgia regiment and entered the service of the Con- 
federacy. 



A TALE OP THE REBELLION. 27 



CHAPTER IV. 

THE STORM BURSTS IT RAINS BLOOD CADET LYON ENTERS HIS 

COUNTRY'S SERVICE HONORS TO HIM AND PEACE BETWEEN 

NORWICH AND DARTMOUTH OUR TWO HEROES AT SWORDS' 

POINTS. 

UEING the remainder of Buchanan's term 
of office, the Union was a constant loser, while 
the South was gaining strength and material 
for the approaching conflict. Government prop- 
erty in the rebel states, forts,* arsenals, navy- 
yards, ships, mints, custom-houses and sub- 
treasuries, w r ith money, arms and munitions 
were taken, to the value of forty millions of dol- 
lars, without a single arm being raised in opposition. 

A convention of the seceded states met at Montgomery, 
Alabama, and the Southern Confederacy was born there on 
the 9th of February, 1861. 

When Lincoln came to take the reins of government 
he found himself at the head of a people paralyzed by the 
terrible state of affairs, despoiled of army, navy and war 
material, and without money or credit, while a formidable 
rebellion, fully organized and exultant at its first success, 
boldly confronted him and dared him to strike. Yet still he 
dreamed of peace, and in his inaugural address he attempted 
to pour oil upon the troubled waters which were rising to 
engulf the country and to blot from the galaxy of nations 
the brightest star which ever shone there. But his dream 




28 THE NORWICH CADETS i 

was quickly and rudely dispelled by the roar of a mortar 
from Sullivan's Island on the morning of the 12th of April. 
The news of the fall of Sumter flashed over the North, 
everywhere rousing the indignation of the people, who 
were stirred as they had never been before. It was quickly 
followed (April loth) by the President's proclamation calling 
for 75,000 men, which was hailed with delight and responded 
to with alacrity. Vermont's first regiment was soon on its 
way to Washington under the command of Col. Phelps, the 
lamented Washburn being second in command. 

The tide of secession which had flowed up to the very 
base of the Capitol began to ebb, and the cleansing waves 
from the hills of the North followed upon its return- 
ing course. Baltimore was humbled by Gen. Butler and 
made safe for the passage of loyal troops. Gen. McClellan 
" completely annihilated the enemy in Western Virginia." 
Gen. Butler took possession of Fortress Monroe and New- 
port News and forced the enemy to retire from Big Bethel 
to Yorktown, though at considerable loss to himself, owing 
to the blunders of his subordinates. Northern soldiers 
poured by thousands into Washington, and the armies of 
the West daily increased in numbers. . 

During these months of excitement cadet Tom Lyon 
remained at Norwich waiting for his graduation, which was 
to occur in July, but anxious to be engaged in the service 
of his country, and determined to be among the foremost 
to answer the next call upon Vermont for volunteers. He 
read with avidity all the news from the seat of war and 
rejoiced in every success of Northern arms. When news 
came from the disastrous field of Bull Run, casting a gloom 
over all the North and filling many hearts with dismay, 
Tom's cheek blanched a little, but it was with shame at the 
cowardice displayed, and not with fear of Southern valor. 

He saw with secret joy that a ninety days' campaign 
was not to end the conflict as many had predicted. 



A TALE OF THE REBELLION. 29 

" Now " said he to Condon, with a beaming face, " there 
will be another call and a chance for us." 

" To feed the worms," added that hero. " You will 
enlist ?" he inquired. 

" Give your voice the falling inflection and you will be 
answered." 

" To fall in a righteous cause is glorious, but very un- 
pleasant, especially to a man of my proportions. I have 
made up my mind to enter upon the study of medicine so 
that I may be able to heal the wounds which you are likely 
to receive." 

"I should rather face your sword than your scalpel, 
but there will be work for doctors before this war is 
over." 

Mat did soon after enter a medical college, while Tom, 
receiving a Captain's commission, hastened with his reg 
iment to join the army of the Potomac, then under the 
command of Gen. George B. McClellan, who had been called 
to supersede the venerable Scott. 

Captain Lyon was at Norwich making a farewell visit 
among the undergraduates, when a telegram came, direct- 
ing him to join his regiment at once. The cadets, with 
whom he was a general favorite, determined at once to 
escort him to the depot and accompany him as far as White 
River Junction, and for this purpose procured the use of 
two extra cars. 

They marched out of town with music, but before they 
reached the descent overlooking the depot, the music ceased 
and they proceeded at " route step." As the first company 
came in sight of the depot they were surprised to see its 
platform and the adjacent grounds black with the students 
of Dartmouth. 

A subdued murmur ran along the lines — ' ; A fight ! a 
fight ! the Darties are out in force." 

But just then from among the assembled students, w T ho 



30 THE NORWICH CADETS: 

were evidently waiting for the cadets, a clear voice rang 
out: — " Three cheers for Norwich University !" 

These were given with hearty earnestness by the 
students. 

The cadets were too much surprised to answer, even if 
it had been '"military" to do so without orders. Never 
before in the history of the two institutions of learning, 
had a cheer for one emanated from the lungs of the stu- 
dents of the other. 

The cadet in command ordered the direct step ; the 
music sounded, and the companies marched down the hill 
to the station, wheeled into line and presented arms to 
Capt. Lyon, who gracefully raised his cap and withdrew. 

Again the same voice heard before cried out — " Three 
cheers for Norwich University ! " 

Again the cheers resounded. 

Then followed the quick commands — u Shoulder arms ! 
order arms ! in place, rest — Three cheers for Dartmouth 
College ! " 

These were given with all the strength of lung the 
cadets could muster. 

Old Dartmouth had won this time. The cadets felt 
that they were fairly conquered by the magnanimity of 
their ancient foes. 

"When the train moved away from the depot a great 
number of students were on it and such friendly greetings 
as passed that day were never known before between cadets 
and students. 

At White River Junction the train stopped and the large 
party assembled upon and about the platform of the depot. 
Cadet Carter, who had been selected by his fellow cadets 
for the duty, now 7 advanced in their front and delivered a 
parting address to Capt. Lyon, which was distinguished for 
its good diction, noble sentiment and fervent patriotism and 
which was delivered in such an elegant and yet soldierly 



A TALE OF THE REBELLION. 31 

manner that the Dartmouth boys were somewhat astonished. 

Our hero responded briefly but feelingly, and promised 
that he would never give his alma 7nater cause to be ashamed 
of him. 

As he closed, the tall form of Staples appeared in the 
open space before the cadets, where he had been urged by 
his fellow students, and now being called upon for a speech, 
he said : — 

" Young Gentlemen of the Norwich University : — At 
this crisis in our national affairs, when men of all parties 
are setting aside their differences to unite in the common 
defence of our country, it seems but proper that the stu- 
dents of Dartmouth and cadets of Norwich should settle 
their differences and unite also, if need be, in the service of 
the nation. In order to do this effectually, we owe you an 
apology, and I am selected to make it. Although we have 
never doubted your scholarship — your full equality with us 
in the arts and sciences — still we are obliged to confess that 
in the past we have looked upon you as a different class of 
young men from ourselves — a class of young men caught by 
the glitter and pomp of martial array, and we have thought 
that brass buttons and a neatly fitting uniform were the 
chief attractions of Norwich University in your eyes. We 
believed you were wasting your time in learning a science 
which could never be of service to you, while it curtailed your 
privileges and tied you down to irksome discipline. To-day 
we see our mistake. You are not only fitted to compete 
with us in all the civil professions, but now, in this supreme 
hour of the nation's need, your military education makes 
you our superiors. You can buckle on the sword and lead 
men in the present conflict, while we of Dartmouth must 
shoulder the musket. For one, I declare that I should 
consider it an honor to serve under any graduate of Nor- 
wich University, and particularly under him to do honor to 
w T hom we are met to-day. (cheers.) I pledge you my word 



32 THE NORWICH CADETS: 

that before many months have passed away the armies of 
the republic shall be swelled by at least one raw recruit 
from Old Dartmouth, and on the muster-roll of his com- 
pany you will find the name of Staples." 

The speaker, as he concluded, was rapturously applaud- 
ed, and then a general handshaking ensued. 

The cadets and students returned together, and the 
former escorted the latter into Hanover. There they were 
received in the chapel and addressed by one of the profes- 
sors, who referred in a happy manner to the unanimity of 
different parties, sects and cliques of men in view of the 
Union's peril. 

A firm and lasting peace was thus established, and 
thereafter both parties regarded as their foes only the 
enemies of their common country. 

By the middle of October, McClellan found himself at 
the head of 150,000 men, while his army was daily being 
increased by the arrival of regiment after regiment from 
the now determined North. Part of the troops were 
moved across the Potomac and encamped upon the " sacred 
soil " of Virginia, the regiment to which Capt. Lyon 
belonged among the rest. 

The autumn and winter wore away in drilling the 
troops and preparing them for active service, while the 
country waited anxiously for a general advance. But the 
perhaps over-cautious commander-in-chief did not see fit to 
order one, and our soldiers did not enjoy the longed-for 
opportunity to measure their strength, on any important 
field, with the hosts of rebellion. Ball's Bluff and Draines- 
ville relieved the monotony somewhat, but in neither of 
these engagements did our hero have a chance to distin- 
guish himself. But while he fretted at inactivity, his first 
battle was not far distant. 

Feb. 13th, Gen. Lander led 4000 men southward from 
the Potomac, and Tom's regiment was a part of this force. 



A TALE OF THE REBELLION. 33 

They chose a route whicli would best screen them from the 
observation of the enemy's scouts, and reached the Great 
Cacapon at night. They spent half the night in throwing 
a rude bridge across this stream, but they worked not only 
with a will but with knowledge. Those Vermonters had 
worked out many a tax on the highways at home, and they 
knew something about bridge-building. They were veterans 
in the use of the ax, and the stringers were soon cut and 
fixed in their places. Where a party of cavaliers would 
have gazed hopelessly from bank to bank, or floundered in 
the water in attempting to cross, these sons of the round- 
heads went dry-shod, not through, but over the waters. 

u Is this in •your district ! " said one brawny Green 
Mountain boy to another. 

" Wal no ; I guess not. We must be a leetle over the 
line, but, howsomever, I call my tax worked out." 

The design of the commander was to surprise a force 
of the rebels at Blooming Gap, a short distance beyond, 
and the men were ordered to move as silently as possible. 

Before day break they came within striking distance, 
and the scouts sent in advance reported the enemy unsus- 
picious of an attack. 

The men were formed in proper order and the com- 
mand given to advance. The enemy's pickets were driven 
in, alarming their friends as they retired. The rebels pour- 
ed out of their tents half clad and half armed, and hastily, 
but imperfectly, formed to withstand the expected onset. 

The Unionists with cheers charged upon the bewilder- 
ed rebels. 

" Follow me, Company A !" cried Captain Tom to his 
men, and sword in hand he led them, sweeping all before 
him. 

It was a hand to hand fight among the rebel tents in 
the dim morning light, but the enemy was forced at every 
point to give way before the furious charge of our troops, 



34 THE NORWICH CADETS : 

who burned to wipe out the disgrace of Bull Run and to 
avenge the slaughter of their comrades at Ball's Bluff, where 
the gallant Baker yielded up as noble a life as the Union 
had to offer. 

Many of the rebels fled in terror from the field, iiot to 
return. But others of a sterner courage w T ere no sooner 
scattered in one quarter, then they re-formed in another, as 
though determined not to submit to defeat at the hands of 
the hated Yankees. Against these worthy foemen the Ver- 
monters fought with a courage which would not have sham- 
ed their sires, and everywhere victoriously. Capt. Lyon's 
cold northern blood grew warm as though it flowed in 
southern veins, and his impetuosity and contempt of dang- 
er inspired his men with a confident courage that guaran- 
teed success. 

Not more than a fourth of the enemy now remained to 
dispute the field, and these were gathered together without 
much regard to military order. They were parts of differ- 
ent disorganized regiments and broken companies — a few of 
the bravest who stubbornly, but hopelessly, contended for 
victory. 

A volley was poured into them which was returned 
with spirit and supplemented with yells of defiance. 

The Vermonters, being in closest proximity to them, 
were ordered to charge, an order which they obeyed with 
alacrity. 

" Come on, you cowardly hounds and pick out your 
graves ; w r e'll dig them for you," came froni the rebel ranks, 

" We are coming, my friends," cried Tom, as his regi- 
ment rushed upon them. 

The enemy withstood the shock and for a few minutes 
the combatants were intermingled. Swords and bayonets 
met and crossed in wild confusion. 

Lyon's sword did not rest. No sooner had he cleared 
of foes a space around him, than he sprang again into the 



A TALE OF THE REBELLION. 35 

thickest of the fight. But his great strength and skill in 
the use of his weapon preserved him harmless. 

Suddenly he found himself confronted by a young 
southern officsr whose daring had several times turned the 
tide of battle momentarily in favor of the confederates. 

Their swords crossed with a sharp ring, and then they 
looked each other in the face. It was light enough now to 
to distinguish countenances at such close quarters, and 
simultaneously there burst from their lips the familiar 
names — 

" Bill !" 

" Tom !" 

The two friends were face to face on the field of battle. 
Instinctively they lowered their swords. Never before had 
they stood opposed. Before they could find further words, 
there was a rush made which separated them, and each 
found himself again in the midst of his own comrades. The 
momentary meeting seemed to both like a vision of the 
night. 

Valor was of no avail to the rebels, surprised as they 
had been, and in a few minutes they were all put to flight, 
young Wolfe escaping with the rest. The contest had been 
as brief as it was fierce. 

The Unionists took about a hundred prisoners in all, a 
comparatively large number of them being officers. 

The dead, friend and foe, were buried, the spoils col- 
lected, the wounded cared for, and after a short interval for 
rest and refreshment, the expedition took up the line of 
march for camp, flushed with the triumph obtained, though 
it was decisive of nothing except the equal courage of 
northern and southern men. 

Once more in the quiet of his tent, Capt. Lyon re-called 
his sudden and unexpected meeting with his old friend, and 
realized, more strongly than he had done before, the 
fraticidal nature of the strife in which he was engaged. He 



36 THE NORWICH CADETS ! 

did not however feel any less inclination to prosecute it to 
a victorious issue. He felt that the integrity and per- 
petuity of the Union afforded to the world the brightest 
hope of universal freedom, and he determined to further, as 
much as in him lay, the accomplishment of the defiant 
prophecy of Andrew Jackson — " The Union must and shall 
preserved." 



A TALE OP THE REBELLION. 



37 



CHAP TEE V. 




BY THE CAMP FIRE ON THE PENINSULA WILLIAMSBURG CAPT. 

LYON A PRISONER AN UNEXPECTED MEETING. 

O K more than another month the main body 
of the army of the Potomac remained inactive. 
The younger officers tried to make the time pass 
as pleasantly as they could, and their endeavors 
were crowned with a fair measure of success. A 
few congenial spirits were in the habit of col- 
lecting together in Capt. Lyon's tent, and some 
of the evenings spent there were very enjoyable. 
The story, the song and jest went round as 
though no enemy were in the land, and war and bloodshed 
were things unknown. The party was usually made up of 
Capts. Lyon and Nason, Lieuts. Merritt and Safford, the 
latters brother, Dr. Safford, and private Hank Wait. The 
last, inside the tent, was on an equality with his titled 
friends, who were all his former schoolmates and com- 
panions. They made no pretence of superiority, because 
there was none, except such as was made by their commis- 
sions and shoulder-straps. Our army was very democratic 
in character, especially the country regiments. Freemen, 
regarding all men as equal and accustomed to call no man 
lord, could not easily learn to look upon their officers as 
their superiors and respect them as such, when they had 
known them for years in civil life as no whit better than them- 
selves — their social equals and co-laborers in peaceful pur- 



38 T3E NORWICH CADETS: 

suits. The officers themselves generally had the same feel- 
ings, — so different from the sentiment of the regular army, 
and from that to be observed in the standing armies of 
foreign countries. 

But this feeling of equality between men and officers 
was not so conspicuous in city regiments, and is something 
which cannot endure through many campaigns in any regi- 
ment, though the rank and file be millionaires and Ad- 
mirable Crichtons. An army is a perfect example of despot- 
ism. Though history proves that the citizens of republics 
— men accustomed to the enjoyment of liberty and equality 
— have generally made good and brave soldiers, it has been 
rather in spite of than because of the tyranny of army rule. 
Intelligent men who have volunteered to fight for a cause 
they esteem their own, determine to put up for a while with 
the necessary distinctions of rank, and to sacrifice, tem- 
porarily, their personal independence and equality for the 
common good. But none the less they know and feel — 

" The rank is but the guinea's stamp, 
The man's the gowd for a 1 that. 11 

This democratic principle reigned supreme in Capt. 
Lyon's tent on the evenings when his friends met together 
for social enjoyment. 

" I don't wear such handsome clothes as you fellows," 
Hank would frequently observe, " but I wear the hand- 
somest face." 

" Can't some one say something flattering about the 
Adonis-like form of our worthy private?" inquired Capt. 
Tom, pointing at the corpulent figure of Hank, who with an 
altitude of barely five feet five carried a weight of two hun- 
dred and thirty pounds avoirdupois. 

" When I took lessons in drawing, in my youth, of the 
lady dauber at Green River Academy," said the tall and 
spare Dr. Safford, coiling his long legs two or three times 
around a camp-stool, " I was told that the curve is the line 
of beauty, and if that information was correct, I think that 



A TALE OF TIIE REBELLION. 39 

private Wait has numerous claims to beauty and those of 
no ordinary character." 

" Perhaps you think the niullen the most graceful mem- 
ber of the vegetable kingdom," retorted Hank ; " but if you 
do, you have as bad a taste as your physic." 

ki The Johnny rebs can't complain that Hank don't give 
hem a fair target," said Joe, who was known on parade as 
Lieut. Safford. 

u I thought you was my friend, Joe," said Hank with 
an affected tone of injured feeling. 

" I am, and I hope you'll remember that, and let me 
hide behind you in the day of battle." 

" No need of that. There a'n't a sharp shooter on the 
other side able to hit such narrow strips of nothing as you 
and the Doctor." 

" Come Merritt, sing us a song," cried Captain Nason. 
" These fellows are all so handsome and witty, that I begin 
to feel out of place in such fine company. We must do 
something brilliant or beat a retreat. Let me give you an 
overture to bring them to silence." 

Seizing a violin, he gave it a few scrapes and turns of 
the keys, and then played with skill a lively tune which put 
his hearers in mind of festive scenes, where joy was uncon- 
fined. 

Then in response to several invitations, Lieutenant 
Merritt sang in a clear, melodious voice the following song : 

I sing of Vernionters, the bold and the free, 

Whom foremost in battle their country shall see : 

Who rush from their mountains like the spring torrent's How, 

And bathe the green vales with their blood as they go. 

Like the fierce wind that blows through their tall mountain pines, 

List the cheers in wild chorus that ring from their lines! 

Undaunted by dangers, untrammeled by fears, 

Beat the hearts in the breasts of Vermont's volunteer-. 

Afar thrown the scabbard when stirs the fierce strife, 
They clutch the bright blade and each blow is a life; 
With muscles of steel and with iron-like frame, 
They write with their bayonets stories of fame. 



40 THE NORWICH CADETS: 

Their springs of green hemlock— the badge of their State — 
Wherever they wave are the gods* nod of fate. 
O. the Green Mountain Boys, the bold mountaineers— 
The pride of their State are Vermont's volunteers. 

The arms that have wielded the scythe and the ax. 
Can beat down the foe like the grass in their tracks: 
And ey< s that with rifle the wild hawk can take. 
Can sight the broad mark that a traitor will make. 
From boyhood to manhood, trained up in rough sports. 
They know not the polish of courtiers and courts, 
But where there are deeds that befit men to do, 
There, foremost. Vermonters stand gallant and true. 
Their bayonets gleam on the fair Southern plain, 
Whose blossoms are painted with blood of the slain, 
And grimly the mountaineer leans on his gun, 
On the field of fierce carnage his valor has*\on. 

But the thoughts of his home, of his dear mountain home, 
Where the green hemlocks bend to the breezes that roam— 
These start down the powder-grimed cheek the warm tears 
Which flow from the hearts of Vermont's volunteers. 

Where the loved ones were left in the snug little cot. 
"Mid the charms of a home which can ne'er be forgot ; 
Where the rich yellow grain upon upland and vale, 
'Neath the bluest of skies, grows ripe for the flail. 
There the soldier will gaze through the mist of his tears, 
But to gather new courage and kill coward fears . 
Hurrah ! for Vermont ! for her bold mountaineer^ ! 
Hurrah ! for Vermont ! and Vermont's volunteer^ ! 

The singer ceased, and there was silence for a few 
moments, for in every mind tender thoughts of home had 
been aroused and contended with patriotic emotion for the 
mastery. The Doctor, who was the only married man in 
the company, had an absent look upon his face. 

"Bravo! Lieutenant," cried Capt. Nason. "I think 
we may venture to stop here a while longer. If our courage 
and patriotism need the spur, you have given it to us." 

" We must fight ! I repeat it gentlemen, we must 
fight !" exclaimed Hank. 

" Let us smoke first," suggested Joe, " you will have 
a chance to lard the lean earth, yet, Falstaff, in some future 
Bull Bun." 



A TALE OF THE REBELLION. 41 

" Fill your pipes gentlemen— pure Virginia, I assure 
you— ami then I shall call for a story from Dr. Safford," 
said Tom. 

" Let me speak a piece," said Hank. 

"Peace, peace; there is no peace," and we don't wish 
any from you. A story from the Doctor." 

" Shoulder your crutch — " 

" And saddle-bags — " 

"And tell how fields are won." 

"No doubt you need to know," replied the Doctor, 
"but I don't wish to usurp the prerogative of the com- 
mander-in-chief. If I must tell a tale, it will have to be one 
of the future— and such an one as I shall tell my grand- 
children." 

" Have it as as you please, and begin." 

" Give us the title and say — Chapter I., but remember 
we don't want any continued story." 

" My story is called 



" Years ago, my clear grandchildren, when I was young, 
and your mother was a baby, occurred the great rebellion 
of which you have read in your school histories. There 
was a young man whom I knew well, named Thomas Lyon, 
and he was as full of courage as the animal whose name he 
bore. He went to the war as a captain. He would have 
gone as a private, but the government would not permit 
it. He had a. genius for command and it was thought best 
to clothe him with authority. In his first battle he became 
frenzied with excitement and rushed alone and singlehand- 
ed upon the enemy, though he knew not, at the time, whith- 
er he was rushing. His men, inspired by his example, 
charged recklessly after him, and the victory was won. For 
this exhibition of gallant conduct, he was made a colonel. 
In his next battle he was surprised with his regiment ber 



42 THE NORWICH CADETS : 

tween two detainments of the enemy, each of which pour- 
ed in a galling fire upon his melting ranks. It was death 
to remain there and it seemed certain destruction to move 
in either direction. But his men got tired of being shot 
down like sheep in a pen, and charged desperately upon that 
portion of the enemy which had got between them and the 
main body of the Union army. It was a charge home, and 
nothing could withstand it. What they did not kill of the 
enemy, they drove into their own camp as prisoners. In 
his report of the battle, the commanding general described 
the affair as a dashing and successful attempt to divide and 
thus conquer the force of the enemy. The colonel was im- 
mediately promoted to the rank of brigadier general. 

In the following campaign, a certain Gen. Ryan was 
severely wounded in a desperate assault upon rebel earth- 
works. In the report of this, a mistake was made, owing to 
the similarity of names, and Gen. Lyon was declared the 
hero. By this lucky accident, my friend became a major 
general. Not being engaged in any other battles, he serv- 
ed creditably through, the remainder of the war, and, at its 
close, retired upon his laurels and the money he had saved 
out of his salary. In the years of peace which followed, 
he devoted himself to politics with the same success which 
he enjoyed in war, ever moving onward in the pathway to 
greatness. He filled successively the highest offices in the 
gift of his native state, and finally a grateful people, as rep- 
resented by the Old Soldiers' Party, nominated him for the 
Presidency. He was triumphantly elected and re-elected, 
serving two terms. Declining a third election, his statue 
w r as placed in the Capitol, w T hich it at present adonis. And 
thus you see, my dear grandchildren, I shall remark, " how 
the humblest merit may rise to the loftiest position." And 
my grandson Philip will proudly exclaim, '" Grandpa knew 
that man ! How I w^ish there would be another war.'' 



A TALE OP THE REBELLION. 43 

" Well, Doctor," said Tom, after allowing the others to 
laugh, " I don't want another story, and if I did, I don't 
think I should call on you for it." 

After much further converse upon different topics, 
Captain Lyon's guests departed for their respective tents, 
and soon silence settled down upon the great army sleeping 
upon the hostile soil of the Old Dominion. Camp-life was 
made comparatively pleasant by those who were determined 
to be happy, as almost any kind of life can be made, but the 
most careless knew that there was stern work to be done 
and hardships to be endured before their flag could wave 
again over a united country. 

Early in March, the enemy abandoned its winter camp 
and retired southward, and soon after there was an advance 
of our grand army upon Centreville and Manassas which 
were found deserted. Having held, occupied and possessed 
these positions without bloodshed, our anaconda army 
turned its head toward the Potomac again, while with its 
tail it drove Stonewall Jackson up the Shenandoah Valley. 

During the latter part of the month, the main body of 
the army was transferred to Fortress Monroe, where Gen. 
McClellan arrived on the 2d of April and the Peninsula 
Campaign began. Our army was over 100,000 strong and 
opposed at first only by the rebel Gen. Magruder, who held 
Yorktown with about 8,000 men. Had the true state of 
affairs then been known, a determined advance might have 
forced the Confederacy into its last ditch and saved us the 
blood and treasure of the sword-fish policy of Gen. Grant, 
which was afterward found necessary. But this would have 
spoiled our story, as well as the reputation of sundry 
heroes who won fame for themselves in the succeeding 
campaigns. 

For thirty days the army was employed in throwing up 
earth-works for the siege of Yorktown. When about ready 
to drive Magruder from his works, he saved them the 



44 THE NORWICH CADETS I 

trouble and expense of powder by quietly withdrawing and 
retreating up the peninsula. 

The pursuit was begun by Stoneman's cavalry, which 
•fras followed by Hooker's, Kearney's and three other 
divisions towards Williamsburg, where the enemy was 
strongly entrenched. This first battle for the possession 
of Richmond was mainly fought by Hooker's division, and 
resulted in a victory to our arms, though at a total loss of 
B war 2,000 men. 

The forest was felled for a breadth of half a mile in front 
of the rebel works, to obstruct the advance of our troops. 
Two regiments were sent into the timber, while the others, 
with two batteries, advanced into the cleared field on the 
right. 

. Now, for the first time. Capt. Lyon found himself en- 
gaged in a great battle, and he and his fun-loving com- 
panions of the Potomac camp proved that they could fight 
as well as laugh and sing. 

" Now Tom," said Nason, as he came near, "is a chance 
to fulfill the doctor's prophecy and win a colonel's commis- 
sion." 

" I don't think I'm crazy enough yet for that, but where 
is he ? — in the rear waiting to saw off our legs ?" 

" I'm here, Thomas," said the tall surgeon just behind 
him ; " I want to be on hand when you run against one of 
those 'bare bodkins ' over yonder." 

" Thank you," replied Lyon, as Fort Magruder again 
opened upon them, dropping all conversation in the roar of 
its guns. 

Soon after a large body of Confederates were seen 
charging towards them in gallant style, yelling as they 
came. 

" Steady, boys, steady," sounded along the line ; "don't 
fire till you are ordered." 

" And then don't waste your powder — fire low," said 
Lt. Joe to his men. 



A TALE OP THE REBELLION. 45 

On came the enemy with furious speed. It required 
great courage calmly to wait their approach. 

" Stand firm ! " growled Lyon to his company. 

" You can count on me ; I am too fat to run," replied 
Hank, raising a laugh even in that moment of peril. 

The enemy were within a few rods of them — their 
faces plainly distinguishable. 

" Fire ! " rang out in a clear tone. 

A tremendous volley was poured into the advancing 
foe, nearly every bullet doing execution. 

The rebels fell by scores ; their ranks were broken ; 
they halted and staggered as though uncertain whether to 
advance or retreat. 

" Fire ! " rang out again the same clear voice. 

Another volley, fired with equal effect, completed the 
demoralization of the enemy. They turned and fled. 

" Upon them, boys ! " cried Capt. Lyon, waving his 
sword and dashing forward followed by his men. 

" I can't run, but I will walk," said Hank, and he fol- 
lowed slowly after, loading as he went. 

Pursuit was useless, as well as dangerous, owing to 
the nearness of the rebel batteries, and Company A, with 
its impetuous Captain, was quickly re-called by the command- 
ing officer. 

Twice more the rebels charged the position held by 
the Green Mountain Boys, each time with fresh troops and 
with increased numbers and more resolute purpose. But 
each time they were repulsed with great slaughter, though 
not without inflicting severe loss upon their opponents. 
Here sank down many to mingle their ashes with the dust 
of an empire built upon slavery — voiceless but perpetual 
pleaders for that liberty for which they died— and the 
Mends they left in northern homes looked with unsatisfied 
eyes to see their faces among the returning brave. 



46 THE NORWICH CADETS: 

Gen. Longstreet's division of the rebel army now 
arrived on the field, and a fresh attempt was made to push 
back our forces. The struggle w r as long and of doubtful 
issue, but the enemy was at last repulsed, though our sold- 
iers used up all their ammunition and all they could find in 
the boxes of their dead comrades, before they accomplished 
the repulse of their determined assailants. 

But the desperate courage displayed could not alone, 
in every case, command success. Another assault on our 
front from the direction of Fort Magruder found our men 
with only bayonets to repel it. 

As the enemy came on, once more the order was given 
to charge and meet them. "With a northern cheer, which 
equalled in volume the southern yell, our men sprang 
forward. Hand to hand they fought till the dead and 
dying lay thick upon the ground, which was red with their 
blood. Capt. Lyon displayed a valor which brought upon 
him the particular attention of the enemy. 

" Stand to them !" he cried ; " not a step backward !" as 
his sword flashed in the air and descended with a force 
which sent his nearest antagonist a corpse to the earth. 
Again it flashed, reeking with blood and fell with a death- 
blow. But the odds were too great in the advanced 
position he was attempting to hold. His foes swarmed 
about him ; they made a rush which foi ced back our troops, 
and when the rebel wave retired, it carried with it about 
two hundred of our men as prisoners. Among them was 
Capt. Lyon, disarmed and furious at his capture, but, 
thanks to his good sword and his good training, without a 
single wound. 

" Come, Yank ; you're bagged. Double-quick it now 
— we can't stop here," said one of his captors, hurrying him 
along. 

" You want to go to Richmond so bad it would be a 
pity to prevent you," said another. 



A TALE OF THE REBELLION. 47 

" I reckon if he can't take Richmond, that Richmond 
can take him," said a third jocose rebel. 

Tom deigned no reply to these remarks, but hoping yot 
to be recaptured before the close of the battle, he was taken 
within the rebel lines and.sent to the rear. 

• His hopes of recapture were not destined to be fulfilled. 

That night the Confederates evacuated Williamsburg, 
leaving the disputed field to be occupied by our army. In 
this particular the battle was a victory to our arms, but our 
loss, over 2,000 in killed, wounded and prisoners, was 
probably quite as large as that of the enemy. We took over 
a thousand prisoners, a larger number than we lost, but the 
most of them were wounded men whom the enemy 
abandoned in their hasty retreat. 

Gen. McClellan claimed the victory in the following 
dispatch to the Secretary of War : 

" Headquarters Army of the Potomac, ) 

Williamsburg, May 6, 1862. j 

Hon. E. M. Stanton^ Secretary of War: — Every hour 

proves* our victory more complete. The enemy's loss is 

great, especially in officers. I have just heard of five more 

of their guns captured. Prisoners are constantly arriving. 

G. B. McCLELLAN, 

Ma j.- Gen. Commanding." 
The night after the battle, our hero found himself on 
the road to Richmond, against his will. He did not know 
how the battle had gone, but rightly judged by the evi- 
dences of retreat around him, that it had gone in favor of 
the Union. He bitterly regretted the prospect of inactivity 
before him while he marched along with his fellow-prisoners, 
guarded by rebels on every side. Among them were a few 
prisoners from a New Hampshire regiment and as Tom 
scanned their faces, he thought he recognized one who wore 
a captain's uniform. At the same time the New Hampshire 
man, probably also looking for a familiar face, glanced at 



48 THE NORWICH CADETS: 

our hero, and with a peculiar smile approached him and ex 
tended his hand. 

It w r as Sophomore Staples of Dartmouth College, 
cadet Wolfe's antagonist hi the battle of Hanover, describ- 
ed in a former chapter. 

" Friends, now, Captain, are w r e ! " inquired Staples. 

" Yes," returned Tom frankly, grasping the extended 
hand, " friends and brothers in misfortune." 

" Fdicitas multos habet amicos — prosperity has many 
friends — adversity but few," said the collegian. 

" True," returned Tom ; " and those of prosperity not 
only fall away from us, but often become our enemies," 
sadly thinking, as he spoke, of his friend Bill. 

" That reminds me," said the other, " of my former 
enemy and victor. What has become of him ? " 

" He is in the confederate service, and probably with 
this army." 

u I hope he won't feel it due to his honor to finish the 
job of killing me which he began so vigorously on that 
night, you remember," said Staples, laughing. 

" Never fear ; Wolfe is as noble as he is brave. He 
never attacks any one unless he feels pretty sure that the 
chances are in favor of his being whipped in the encounter. 
I don't think he will ever distinguish himself in the pursuit 
of a beaten enemy." 

Thus conversing together, the two walked on cheerfully 
to prison. 

That same evening the friends of Capt. Lyon, missing 
him, sought his body on the field of battle ; but no trace of 
him was found. 

" Not dead, then, it is certain," said Capt. Nason. 

" Probably wounded and taken prisoner" said Lieuten- 
ant Merritt. 

" Our future president is no doubt a prisoner," said 
Dr. Safford, deliberately, " but it is my opinion that he is 



A TALE OF THE REBELLION. -49 

not seriously wounded, if at all. We know that the rebels 
have left their own wounded behind them, and it is not 
likely that they have taken any of ours." 

In this opinion all coincided, and somewhat relieved, 
yet sad at the loss of the favorite of the mess, they return- 
ed to the bivouac of the regiment and cast themselves 
down upon the ground to sleep as well as they could amid 
such horrible surroundings — all except the Doctor, who was 
busy all night, nearly, in attending to the wounded. 



50 THE NORWICH cadets: 



CHAPTER VI. 

LIBBY PRISON COL. WOLFE HELOISE C^SAR, ONE OF THE BONES 

OF CONTENTION LOVE A HOPE OF ESCAPE. 



8 




A P T A I N S Lyon and Staples were con- 
ffg ducted to Richmond and lodged in Libby pris- 
^ on, where they were treated w T ith as much kind- 
ness as they had reason to expect. They had 
nothing to complain of except that they were 
prevented frorn participating in the fighting 
wmich they knew to be going on around the 
C{> rebel capital in which they were confined. 
Their anxious inquiries elicited no satisfactory respons- 
es from the jailor, but they rested in the confident hope 
that McClellan would prove victorious, and, making a trium- 
phal entry into Richmond, burst open the doors of their 
prison and set them free. 

t Had they known the actual result of the Seven Days' 
battle — that the star-spangled banner was being trailed in 
the mire of retreat through White Oak Swamp, instead of 
waving aloft in advance on Richmond — they would have 
hummed the national anthem a few times less than they did. 
But they could not long remain in ignorance of the truth. 
The air was full of tidings from the battlefield, and the 
very wind seemed to tell of success to the Confederate 
arms. 



A TALE OF THE REBELLION. 51 

Portions of the victorious rebel army entered the city, 
and the shoutings and rejoicings sufficiently corroborated 
the story of the wind. 

The two prisoners grew melancholy, but more at the 
defeat of their comrades than at their own unpleasant con- 
dition. 

" The prospect isn't very cheering," remarked Lyon. 

" No," returned Staples. " I fear a great disaster has 
befallen our army ; perhaps it has been destroyed." 

" I don't believe that such an army as we had has al- 
lowed itself to be destroyed or captured. It has been forced 
to retire, no doubt, but there is fight left in it yet, and 
these jubilant individuals, outside our present residence, 
will find it out some future day." 

The door swung open and a Confederate colonel enter- 
ed the room. With a hasty glance at the inmates, he step- 
ped quickly towards Captain Lyon. The Norwich C.idets 
confronted each other. 

The two Mends clasped hands. Smiles lighted up 
their faces, while there was a suspicious moisture in their 
eyes. The circumstances in which they again met impress- 
ed them with some feelings of sadness, but they were soon 
cast off. Shaking his friend's hand heartily, Bill exclaimed 
in the merry voice of old : 

" Welcome to Kichmond ! " 

" Thank you," returned Tom, in the same tone, " for 
your cordial hospitality ; and allow me to express the hope 
that, at no distant day, I may have the pleasure of welcom- 
ing you to the land of the free and the home of the brave." 

" I shall be happy to see you at any time, I assure you, 
but I prefer that the meeting be on some other soil. I fear, 
as our friend Condon could poetically express it — 

' The land of the free 

Would prove a prison to me.' " 



§2 THE NOfiWlCH cadets: 

Bill here glanced at Capt. Staples inquiringly. The 
latter approached as if doubtful of the reception he would 
meet with. 

" Allow me, Col. Wolfe," said Tom, " to bring to your 
remembrance an old acquaintance — Capt. Staples of Han- 
over, formerly commander of the Dartmouth Sophomore 
Brigade." 

" A second time your vanquished enemy," said Staples. 

Bill took his hand while he laughingly replied — 

" I ask a truce to bury old animosities. I see that 
Tom is now on your side, and I fear he would not step in 
to save me from a whipping, as he did when we met be- 
fore." 

Friendly relations being thus established, the three sat 
down for a pleasant conference upon things past and 
present. Each had many inquiries to make, and much in- 
formation to impart, and the time passed so agreeably that 
the two Unionists almost forgot that they were prisoners, 
and that their pleasant companion wore the uniform of an 
enemy. 

"Promotion must be rapid in the Confederate 
service," said Tom, pointing to his friend's shoulder straps. 

" It has to be, that we may keep up with you. We 
don't commence as brigadiers," returned Bill. 

" How happened you to find us out so soon ?" inquired 
Tom, " I feared I should not see you." 

" I heard some Yankee officers were taken, and know- 
ing your natural tendency to get into trouble, I thought 
you might be one of them, and came to see." 

" I am very glad you came, and hope you will excuse 
me if I don't return your call. Circumstances beyond my 
control oblige me to keep the house quite closely for the 
present." 

" You are quite excusable." • 



A TALE OP THE REBELLION. 53 

" Tell me," continued Tom, " if there is anything left 
of our army, — if it won't be giving too much information 
to the enemy. I suppose we have been whipped." 

" I think you have been — 3orry to pain you with dis- 
agreeable news — and your whole army has left, not is 
left, though most of it is safe enough for the present. Little 
Mac. has ' changed his base,' I think he calls it that." 

After some further talk, Col. Wolfe rose to take his 
leave. 

" Keep up your spirits boys ; it is the fortune of war 
that we should be vanquished sometimes ; we can't always 
be victors. I will call on you as often as I can until my 
regiment moves, and, meanwhile, I will see that your 
rations are improved in quality, and that you are supplied 
with tobacco." 

" Go, miserable comforter, but don't forget the 
tobacco," replied Tom, as the door closed behind his Mend. 

This visit was as a gleam of sunshine within the walls 
of Libby, and the prisoners felt more reconciled to their 
confinement for knowing that they had at least one personal 
friend among the enemy. 

The next morning they found their breakfast superior 
to anything which they had experienced before, and they 
were able to supplement it with some fine cigars, a box of 
which had been handed them by the jailor. 

In the afternoon they received another visit from Col. 
Wolfe. He entered, accompanied by a young lady whom he 
introduced as his sister. 

Heloise Wolfe was about eighteen years of age, of 
slight but graceful form, clear brunette complexion and 
fine regular features. Her eyes were large, black and elo- 
quent and her wavy hair, of the same hue, was of luxuriant 
growth. She had a bright sparkling beauty calculated to 
dazzle the beholder, but beauty was not her only charm. 
Possessed of superior intelligence without being strong- 



54 THE NORWICH CADETS: 

minded, in the late sense of that abused term ; animated in 
conversation, without being disposed to monopolize it ; of 
high principle and earnest nature ; generous, impulsive and 
sincere, with a dash of the chivalric temperament of her 
brother, whom she strongly resembled, she was a sister to 
be proud of, as Col. Wolfe evidently thought. Capt. Lyon, 
as he gazed upon her with poorly concealed admiration, felt 
like transferring his affection from the brother to the sister. 

" My sister has heard so much of you, Capt. Lyon — of 
your prowess, beauty, etc., — that on hearing you had taken 
up your residence temporarily among us, and that I was 
coming to see you, she insisted on accompanying me, — 
doubting I suppose, w T hether she would otherwise have an 
opportunity of making your acquaintance. I tried to dis- 
suade her by telling her you were one of the vandal army 
come to sack our cities and desolate our homes, and that it 
was a part of her duty, as a southerner, to hate all such. 
She, however, thought it only a Christian duty to visit the 
prisoner, and I finally allowed her to come." 

" You know my brother Willie so well, Capt. Lyon," said 
Miss Heloise, smiling in so distracting a manner that the 
Union officer felt himself doubly a prisoner, " that you will 
interpret his speech correctly. It means that I feel it not 
only a duty, but a pleasure to visit one whom my brother 
esteems so highly as he does yourself." 

u I am sure your motives are worthy of you, Miss 
Wolfe, and I thank you for the honor you do me, but I fear 
your brother has spoken more highly of me than I deserve," 
replied Capt. Lyon, bowing low before the young lady. 

" My gallant friend exemplifies the saying that true 
merit is always modest," said Col. Wolfe. 

" True friendship ought not to be so satirical," said 
Lyon. " Be merciful." 

" I doubt whether I ought to show much mercy to an 
enemy of the Confederacy. It would be setting a bad 
example." 



A TALE OF THE REBELLION. 55 

" My brother is suspicious of my loyalty," said Heloise, 
" because I cannot get over my love for the old Ha"-." 

" Thank God you cannot," replied Lyon warmly, grow- 
ing more enamored of her as he perceived that she was not 
a venomous secessionist. 

" Treason ! cried Bill, half in earnest, half in jest. 

" That can be no crime in the Confederacy," said Tom. 
" The divine right of treason is the very soul of your gov- 
ernment." 

" So I tell them," said Heloise, gleefully, and that I 
have a right to secede all alone by myself if I choose." 

" I think I had better take you away, Miss, before you 
are utterly perverted. The very air is tainted with unionism 
here," said her brother. 

" You see, Captain, my reputation for southern loyalty 
is not very good." 

" I trust your charitable kindness hi visiting a Union 
prisoner will not give you an unpleasant reputation in your 
circle of friends. If it does I shall regret the visit, much 
as it has brightened one day of a tiresome captivity." 

''Never fear for her, Tom," said Bill; "no one has 
thought of indicting her for treason yet." 

" No ; they let me say what I please, because, I sup- 
pose, they think I'm not worth minding." 

Tom did not say, but he looked as if he was of the 
opinion that they were very stupid who thought so. 

" It is really time that we should go," said Bill, sud- 
denly growing serious, as he took his friend's hand. " I 
have left my bad news unsaid till the last. My regiment 
leaves to-morrow ; Tom and I cannot tell when we shall 
meet again. I have taken measures to have yon made com- 
fortable as long as you remain here, and my sister will 
further my intentions as much as she is able." 

"Your generosity is appreciated, Bill, but I would be 
content on half rations if they were seasoned with your 



56 THE NORWICH CADETS: 

company. But you must go, of course. I can't wish you 
success — my patriotism won't admit of that — but I do 
hope you will be taken prisoner and kept in close confine- 
ment till the close of the war." 

" Thank you for your good wishes, Tom, but I hope 
they are not prophetic.'' 

Good-bye was said, and Wolf and his sister retired. 

"A glorious fellow !" exclaimed Staples, who very much 
admired his former antagonist. 

" She is " returned Capt. Lyon, abstractedly, gazing at 
a patch of sky through the grated window. 

Our hero did not appear to be very communicative dur- 
ing the remainder of the day and evening, and Staples 
finally gave up the attempt to engage him in conversation. 
He was busy with his own thoughts, but whether they were 
sad or pleasant was not discernible. The next day, howev- 
er, he was more companionable ; but now that Col. Wolfe 
came no more to visit them our friends would have found 
their life al Libby almost intolerable had not Miss Heloise 
taken it upon herself to show a generous kindness to her 
brother's friend. 

Her father held office under the confederate govern- 
ment and the family, therefore, resided at Richmond. The 
doors of Libby prison were open to Heloise, without ques- 
tion, whenever she chose to enter them and she frequently 
visited the Yankee prisoners accompanied by her sable 
attendant, Caesar, a young slave about twenty years old, 
bom and bred in the family and entirely devoted to his 
handsome young mistress. 

Caesar was a well built young fellow, as black as ebony, 
with teeth and eyes in remarkable contrast with Ins shining 
skin. Of a happy and faithful disposition and possessed of 
much natural shrewdness, he was a favorite family servant 
and occupied a much easier position in life than human 
chattels generally do. 



A TALE OF THE REBELLION. 57 

" How happens it," said Capt. Lyon one day to Caesar, 
u that with such a name as yours, you are not in the army T 

" Didn't pick .out my own name, massa ; dunno noffin' 
'bout war ; young massa William do all de fightm for de 
family. I'se willin'; de smell ob powder am stremely ob- 
noxious to dis child." 

Heloiso brought books and papers which helped great- 
ly to relieve the monotony of prison-life, and many delicacies, 
which were not in the prison bill of fare, found their way to 
the room occupied by our friends. But more highly prized 
than the material comforts which she brought, was the 
pleasure of her company. She generally sat down and 
spent some time in cheerful conversation, and the moments 
thus brightened seemed to shed a radiance over all the re- 
maining day. 

In the interchange of sentiment which occurred on 
these occasions, which were quite frequent, the acquaint- 
ance of Capt. Lyon with his friend's sister gradually ripen- 
ened into a tender intimacy. 

As this fact became apparent to the sharp eyes of Capt. 
Staples, he withdrew himself as much as possible from 
the company of the lovers, offering as a poor apology, 
when his silence was noticed — which was not often — his 
absorbing interest in the book he was reading. On one 
such occasion he had a volume of sermons and having read 
one of these, without looking at the title, he was exercising 
his ingenuity in guessing at the text. With all his Yankee 
talent in that direction, however, he was very wdde of the 
mark. 

Our hero found that Heloise w^as at heart a Union 
woman ; that she very much regretted the disruption of 
those ties which bound the North and South together and 
contributed so much to their strength, prosperity and hap 
piness, and that she was far from feeling satisfied with the 
position which her father and brother had seen fit to take, 

H 



58 THE NORWICH CADETS : 

She cordially sympathized with Lyon in his aspirations 
after a restoration of the Union and grieved over disaster 
to the federal arms which threatened, at the least, to delay 
the day of triumph. She did not forget that the gallant 
man in whom she felt a growing interest owed to his 
patriotism, his deprivation of liberty, and she tried to con- 
sole him as best she could, in his irksome confinement, and 
to rconcile him to the inactivity which seemed decreed. 

" When first taken prisoner," said he, " I felt that I 
could hardly endure a protracted confinement, and know 
that while I was unable to strike a blow, my brave com- 
panions would be fighting the battles of our country." 

" I know you long to be with your regiment again, 
devastating, as Will says, the fair homes of the South, but 
you must try to be patient." 

u I think that of late I am learning to excel in that 
virtue. Since captivity led me to you, Heloise, I feel like 
blessing the fate that made me captive." 

; ' And yet, how your eyes would brighten to learn that 
you were to be exchanged." 

" I fear that they would weep. Is treason infecting my 
heart, or " 

"Love," said Staples, reading unconsciously aloud, "is 
the fulfilling of the law." 

The speakers glanced hurriedly at the reader, but he 
seemed not to be aware of their presence, and ignorant of 
having taken any part in the conversation. 

" My friend is no doubt correct," said Tom, smiling and 
speaking in a lower tone, but Uncle Sam has other views of 
a soldier's duty." 

" Not if the love be love of country," said Heloise in- 
tently regarding the floor, k ' that is the grander passion." 

" Ah ! I know, I love my country, Heloise, but that is 
not the love that reconciles me to captivity." 



A TALE OF THE REBELLION'. 59 

* c No : nor does any other. Yon would break through 
these barred windows, if yon thought that liberty was on 
the ontside of them." 

Lyon half rose from his seat, as if a new idea had 
struck him, then sinking back, said slowly. " Tis true ; I 
should : but I should love you none the less." 

fi You confess you would desert me. if you could," said 
Heloise, playfully. 

" Not you, but Richmond." 

In a little while, Heloise with Caesar took her departure, 
Staples rising long enough to bid her good afternoon. 

But when the door was closed, locked and bolted, and 
the prisoners were left alone again, the New Hampshire 
man sat down with a yawn over the shut book of sermons, 
which he held in his hand, and then, turning his eyes sleepily 
toward the beaming face of his companion, he inquired — ■ 

" Lyon, have you been reading this sermon on the 
" Cheerful uses of Adversity ?'" 

" No, why do you ask ?" 

" Because you seem to be growing happier every day, 
and I am sure we are in adversity.'' 

•• We are in the hands of our adversaries, but why let 
them restrain our spirits as well as our bodies ?" 

" I can't guess : I give it up." 

" You are getting low-spirited." 

" Perhaps ; I don't think I am getting high spirited." 

" Don't give up to despair yet : there are brighter 
days in store for us." 

" Glory waits us you think : but won't it get tired wait- 
ing r 

" No ; I feel a wonderful elation and hopefulness." 

" Much greater than when we first entered these walls, 
do you not V 

" Yes j I do." 



#0 THE NORWICH CADETS i 

" I understand it, Lyon, and I congratulate you. I ex- 
perience, indeed, by sympathy, a small share of your hap- 
piness, but it does not suffice me." 

" What are. you firing at, comrade V 

'•Not at your happiness, tantalizing as it is. You 
presented a much more consoling spectacle when you were 
as miserable as myself." 

" I shall have to flog you Staples, if you don't stop 
talking with such oracular mistiness. Out with it ; what 
are you trying to say ! " 

" We grow hard-hearted as fortune smiles upon us,'' 
returned Staples, smiling at his Mend's threat. 

"Well, I'm listening," said Tom. 

" I do not envy your happiness, I hope ; certainly I do 
not wonder at it, and you ought not to wonder at my mis- 
ery." 

"I thought happiness contagious. Wiry are you not 
happy when you think that lam?" 

" Because I can't make love to Caesar." 

" Well," said Tom, laughing, " I plead guilty to want 
of consideration for your desolate condition, and I will 
wear as unhappy a countenance as I can assume hereafter." 

" Then we will be fraternally and happily miserable 
together." 

" Yes, so long as we are forced to remain here : but 
listen Staples," said Lyon lowering his voice, "it has occur- 
ed to me to-day, for the first time, that we have not shown 
much spirit in staying cooped up here so long without mak- 
ing an effort to regain our liberty." 

" Perhaps not ; but do you imagine that we could take 
Richmond, if we could get out of here ? " 

" No ; but I imagine it might give Richmond some 
trouble to ?-e-take us." 

" I should hope so ; too much trouble to make it worth 
while-; for if we were taken we should not, probably, get 



A TAtfe OF THE REBELLioX. (jl 

such comfortable quarters as these, nor should we be likely 
to see again the smiling countenance of Caesar;" 

" We rim of course the risk of getting severer treat- 
ment, if we fail." 

k ' But can we break out of this ! " said Staples with 
some eagerness. 

"I think we can, though I have not yet contrived the 
method. We must consider the obstacles in the way of our 
escape and the means of overcoming them." 

" We are on the second floor," said Staples, looking out 
of the window, " and if we could get through here, might 
jump." 

" That won't do ; it is paved below. We should break 
our legs and that would be the end of it. We can manu- 
facture a rope easily enough out of our clothing and slide 
down without danger." 

" So far, well ! how shall we get through the window ? 
And if we get through and reach the ground safely, how 
shall we escape the watchman ? And if we escape him, 
how shall we get out of the city, guarded as it is by police- 
men and soldiers, and we utter strangers to it and dressed 
in federal uniform ? And if we get out, how shall we find 
our way through this hostile country and find provision till 
we reach the free soil 1 " 

" You have said enough to dampen any one's ardor a 
little," returned Lyon, " but still I have a hope that we may 
succeed. It is well to look these difficulties all in the face 
and be ready to meet them. We will take time to mature 
our plan and leave as little to good luck as possible. There 
is no use in taking the first step, unless there is a reason- 
able prospect of being able to take the second and the 
third and fourth also." 

" Let us sleep on it ; I am always wisest in my dreams." 

" One of us may have a vision of a safe path to free- 
dom, so good night." 



62 TflE NOBWICfi CADfetS: 

They lay down to- rest but it was long before either fell 
asleep, their minds were so full of the subject of conversa- 
tion. And when at last they slept, their minds worked on. 
They dreamed, but we will leave their dreams to another 
chapter. 



A TALE OF THE REBELLION. 63 




CHAPTER VII. 

DREAMS OF LIBERTY PLANS FOR ESCAPE A NIGHT WATCH FARE- 
WELL TO HELOISE. 

OOD morning," exclaimed Staples, as his eye- 
lids flew open like the lids of a spring watch 
case, at the first touch of the rosy fingers of 
Aurora. 

" Good morning," returned his companion 
drowsily. "Tell me your dream while I'm 
waking up." 

" No, begin you." 
" As you please, but nothing in my dream will prove of 
any practical importance. Not a hint was given me in re- 
gard to the ways and means of escape. I dreamed that I 
was again among my friends and with our army, encamped 
somewhere on the Potomac, in the neighborhood of Wash- 
ington, but how I got there I have not the faintest 
remembrance." 

" Not much of a dreamer, you. The conditions were 
highly favorable, and yet you made nothing of them. Now 
listen to me," said Staples, giving the finishing pull at his 
necktie. "I dreamed that the Goddess of Liberty, w T ho 
bore a striking resemblance to Miss Wolfe, threw open our 
door and beckoned to me to follow her. With the courage 
of Hamlet, I obeyed and followed where §he led, through 



64 THE NORWICH CADETS: 

the door down the stairs and out into the open air. It was 
night ; the guard slept ; the city was silent ; the sky was 
clear and the moon so bright that the street-lamps per- 
formed a useless office. I saw standing near the prison 
wall a close carriage of diminutive size, but elegant shape 
and delicate workmanship. It was of burnished gold with 
silver wheels. Harnessed to it — the buckles of their har- 
nesses thickly studded with glistening diamonds — w r ere 
four cream colored horses with flowing w r hite manes and 
tails and with wings upon their feet. They beat the air 
impatiently with their feet, but did not move the vehicle to 
which they were attached. The Goddess motioned me to 
enter. Observing that Caesar w 7 as on the box, I sprang in 
without question and closed the door after me. While I 
was observing the gorgeous and luxurious furnishing of the 
inside, I heard the whip crack and immediately perceived 
that we w r ere in rapid motion, although no sound was 
audible save that of swiftly beating wings. Instead of 
dashing along the street, as I had expected, we rose at once 
into the air with great velocity. Higher and higher we 
ascended, until, looking from the window, I saw the spires 
of Eichmond far below. Then we turned our course north- 
ward and flew with the speed of the wind over the road- 
way of cloud, the wheels flashing as though they were 
wheels of light. There was no stop or turn. Nothing im- 
peded our progress or slackened the speed of our tireless 
steeds. Though conscious of my lofty altitude, I had a 
feeling of greater security than I generally have when 
driving along country highways, and it seemed to me the 
most easy and pleasant method of travelling that I ever ex- 
perienced. At the gait we went, however, our journey 
necessarily soon came to an end. As we drew near Wash- 
ington, we began to descend, making an angle w 7 ith our 
former course of about thirty degrees, and finally touched 
the earth in front of the Capitol. This means that I shall 



A TALE OF THE REBELLION. 65 

be a congressman sometime. As I was about to alight, 
there was a burst of flame around me, in which my whole 
establishment, horses, carriage, Caesar and all, vanished in 
an instant, and I woke up to find the sun shining brightly 
in my eyes through the barred window of our prison." 

" Staples, I would never wake up again," if I were you. 
Your sleeping fancy is to yonr waking, as feathers to lead,'' 
said Tom, when the other had finished his narration. M I 
suppose the interpretation of yonr dream is that you will 
escape and I shall not, as I was not invited to take passage 
with you in that handsome Concord buggy, which the New 
Hampshire men always dream of, when they dreani of going 
anywhere." 

" You are as bad at interpreting dreauis as you are at 
dreaming. According to the proper interpretation of the 
dream, it is very clear to me that if either of us is to be 
left behind, that one will be myself.'' 

" By the same rale I am to be congressman, also." 
"An intelligent people must decide between us." 
•• Well, we won't dispute now about so very distant an 
honor. Explain yonr dream in yonr own way. What do 
you find in it that we can turn to our account ?" 

•• Iffy dream, to me, is encouraging. It gives me an 
idea which would, not otherwise have occurred to me. Yon 
will remember that my goddess resembled Miss Wolfe. 
She is, for us, the Goddess of Liberty. She can, and will, 
I think, if we confide in and appeal to her, assist ns to 
escape from this prison and the city. Once free, outside 
the limits, we will strike across the country (I wish we 
could go through the air) towards Washington. With a 
few tools, which she could easily bring lis, we could soon 
let ourselves out of this building, and then with a carriage 
and disguises which she could furnish, we could make our 
way out of the city. That is what my dream tells me." 
-It could be done in the way you say, I have no 
i 



66 THE NORWICH CADETS : 

doubt ; but, in your eagerness to escape, you forget one 
thing, and that is, that the plan you propose is unworthy of 
us and therefore not to be adopted. Miss Wolfe is loyal to 
the Union and would not hesitate to assist us, I feel sure, if 
we were to divulge our plan to her, but we cannot abase 
her generous sympathy. Since she is the person who visits 
us and the only one in the city with whom we are 
acquainted, she could not render us the assistance you 
speak of, without subjecting herself to the risk of almost 
certain discovery." 

•• You are right Lyon, we cannot ask her to com- 
promise herself for us in such a way. I beg you to believe 
I do not seek my liberty at her expense. I must dream 
again." 

" Perhaps a little thinking, with our eyes open, would 
do as well. Let us look over this place and see what we 
have to do." 

An examination of the windows showed that it would 
be necessary to remove at least two of the iron bars, which 
crossed the lower part of each window, in order to admit 
the passage of a man's body. To do this work, they had 
only two stout pocket knives, but these they thought would 
enable them to loosen one end of each of the two bars and 
then, with their united strength, they could either break or 
bend around the bars sufficiently for their purpose. 

Having selected the window which seemed the most 
favorable, they considered the matter as settled, and then 
addressed themselves to the study of the prison sur- 
roundings, the manner in which it was guarded and other 
things which they thought it would be useful to know. 
They desired especially to know something of the topo- 
graphy of the city and they spent much of the day in taking 
observations from the windows. 

Once in the open country, the loyal sun by day and the 
stars by night would direct their course ; for the lights of 



A TALE OF THE REBELLION. 67 

heaven do not look with favor upon secession, which is 
something unknown to the celestial sphere. 

During the evening and all night long, the two prison- 
oners, in the silence and darkness of their room, watched 
and listened, taking note of everything that occurred with- 
out the walls. They observed when the sound of passing- 
feet and wheels ceased in the street ; when the lamps were 
lighted : when the city seemed generally to have sunk to 
repose ; when the lamps were extinguished, and at what 
time in the morning the hurrying stream of life began to 
flow again. They noticed also the sentinel's beat, and calcu- 
lated that, if they did not attract his attention by any noise 
made in their descent, they would have ample time to reach 
the ground and steal away from the immediate vicinity of 
the prison before he could pass twice over the space he was 
required to traverse. 

At an early hour in the morning, they retired to rest, 
but not with any intention of dreaming, and slept soundly 
till breakfast time. 

During the forenoon, they discussed together the route 
it would be advisable for them to take. They could either 
go down the peninsula and attempt to reach Fortress 
Monroe, or they" could move almost directly northward 
toward Aquia Creek. There was but little difference in dis- 
tance ; the only question was, which is the safer route. 
They knew our troops had abandoned the peninsula and 
supposed the ground to be occupied by the rebels. 

" If it is," said Staples, " we shall stand a right smart 
chance of being taken and returned to this hotel." 

On the other hand if, as they suspected, a large part of 
the rebel army had gone north, it seemed probable that it 
had gone northward toward Aquia Creek, to which place 
from Richmond, there was an almost straight line of rail- 
road. To take this route seemed, at first glance, to be run- 
ning after the enemy with a certainty of being captured j 



68 THE NORWICH CADETS : 

but further consideration convinced them that the Con- 
federate troops would be moved by rail and that if the}' 
bore to the right and kept off from the line of railroad, they 
would have little to fear, except from occasional cavalry 
parties and the inhabitants of the country through which 
they would have to pass. These they thought they could 
avoid by keeping to the fields and woods instead of the 
highways, and traveling mostly by night. 

They finally determined to make their march to free- 
dom by this route. Staples proposed to start that night. 
Lyon was no less eager to be gone, but he did not like to 
depart until he had once more seen Heloise and taken some 
sort of farewell. 

That afternoon the lady came again, accompanied as 
usual by her faithful Csesar, and while Staples extracted 
from the latter all the information of which he was pos- 
sessed in regard to the topography of the city and the dis- 
position of rebel troops. Captain Lyon engaged the mistress 
in conversation. 

"But for your visits, Heloise, this life would be unen- 
durable." 

" Scarcely endurable, as it is, I fear,"' returned she. 

" While you are present it is easily endurable, but I 
confess to you that I loathe this inactivity." 

" You may be exchanged soon." 

" And when I am gone, will you be able to remember 
me till the war closes ?" 

" Perhaps, if it closes soon ; but if it should prove a 
thirty years war, who can vouch for memory then ?" 

" This war cannot last like that ; it is on too large a 
scale to be protracted many years. It must end soon." 

" Then I will try to remember you," said she smiling : 
11 but I warn you not to grow gray in service and yet ex- 
pect to live young and fresh in my memory." 

" But give me my liberty, and then if hard fighting on 



A TALE OF THE REBELLION. 



my part can bring peace and Heloise, you may count on a 
speedy end of the war." 

" I see you are determined to throw your life away at 
the first chance. But we will keep you prisoner here where 
you are safe, my brave Captain. You are not gone yet." 
" And yet I may be, within a week. 
" What ! why do you speak so ?" said she gazing in- 
quiringly upon his animated features. 

" As you just said, I may be exchanged." 
" True ; but I hope not ; at least I fear — I dread the 
danger you will go to." 

" Fear not but hope and pray for me, and tell me now, 
that when I am struggling in my country's service I may 
count upon your constancy." 

" You may," responded she with trembling voice. 
Filled with undefined alarms, her cheeks flushed and 
her eyes grew misty. She could not tell the cause of such 
sudden, vague fears, but when they came to part and their 
hands met as good-bye was said, she felt as though she 
should not look upon him again. He knew that he was 
gazing upon her face for the last time for months— perhaps 
for years — if ever he should see her again. 



70 THE NORWICH cadets: 



CHAPTER VIII. 

DIGGING OUT EXIT FROM LIBBY UNEXPECTED ENCOUNTER AND 

REINFORCEMENT THE MARCH TO FREEDOM BEGUN THE 

DESERTED CABIN A CALL FROM CONFEDERATE TROOPERS THE 

RETREAT RESUMED ON HORSEBACK DANGER AHEAD A HORSE 

TRADE C^SAR APPOINTED COMMISSARY CONFISCATION OF 

REBEL PROPERTY AND A NARROW ESCAPE. 

HAT evening after tea the prisoners sat down 
by the window and proceeded noiselessly to pick 
away w T ith their knives the masonry, w T hich 
secured the bars in place. It w T as very slow 
w r ork, but they kept steadily at it, except when 
they heard steps beneath their wdndow r . As the 
night w r ore on, and there was less danger of their 
operations being heard and discovered, they w r orked more 
energetically, and had the satisfaction of seeing that they 
were making some progress, although their knives gave 
evidence that they were not designed to cut anything quite 
so hard as the w r alls of Libby prison. 

By midnight each had succeded in loosening the end 
of a bar, and applying their united strengh they bent them 
around. From their bed-blankets they constructed a rope 
w T hich was long enough to reach within easy dropping dis- 
tance of the ground. Next they removed the lower part 
of the window, and the way was open. Then they waited 
until they saw the sentinel pass under their window and 




A TALE OF THE REBELLION. 71 

turn the corner of the building all unsuspicious of the fast 
beating hearts above him and the plot which was about to 
be put in execution against the peace and dignity of the 
Confederacy. 

•• Now is our time ; not a moment is to be lost," whis- 
pered Lyon excitedly. " Go first if you choose." 

Staples grasped the cord, one end of which had been 
secured, and crawling through the opening, slid swiftly 
down and dropped lightly to the ground. 

One moment Lyon waited to see if any alarm was rais- 
ed, and then he rapidly followed his friend and soon stood 
by his side. 

As silently as possible they fled down the street in the 
opposite direction from that which the sentinel had taken. 
They had passed over not more than half a block when a 
dark figure sprang from the shadow of a building on to the 
sidewalk directly in front of them. 

Lyon drew back his arm to level this obstacle to his 
progress, when the unknown, seeing his peril, spoke in a 
loud whisper — 

i; Don't strike, Massa Lyon ; it's Caesar — I'se been 
watchin' for you. Miss Heloise tole me. Come wid me ; 
carriage 'round de corner." 

While giving utterance to these ejaculations, Ctesar 
was rapidly leading the way to the carriage he had spoken 
of, which stood but a few rods distant in charge of a fellow 
servant. 

The faithful black quickly opened the door and beckon- 
ing them to enter whispered as they obeyed him — 

" Dere's oder close in dare, wid pistols, knives and 
eberyting yer want." 

They jumped in ; the door was shut and Csesar mount- 
ed the box. As the carriage rolled along at a gentle trot, 
its occupants found each a suit of plain clothes lying on the 
forward seat, for which they exchanged their own as soon 



72 THE NORWICH CADETS: 

as they could. In the breast pocket of each coat were 
found a small pair of revolvers and a sheath knife, together 
with a box of ball cartridges. 

" My dream is coming true I think," said Staples as 
they were making these discoveries, and effecting an ex- 
change of garments. 

" It is indeed. Miss Wolfe must have suspected our 
design, though I did not intend to give her cause." 

" Women are quicker-witted than men. She interpre- 
ted correctly your lugubrious expression at parting, and 
sent Caesar, as he informed us, with the carriage to wait for 
our exit from Libby." 

They were soon off the pavement and then the horses 
w r ere put to a smarter gait. After about an hour's ride they 
stopped. Caesar opened the door and the two fugitives 
stepping out found themselves on a country road and a few 
miles distant southward from Richmond. 

Caesar explained that he had driven them there to avoid 
the rebel troops, which were most to the north of the city, 
and then addressing himself to Lyon he said : 

w Massa Lyon, Miss Heloise say I can go wid you if 
yer chooses. I knows all de country, and de niggers on de 
way won't be afraid of me ef we want to get sumting for de 
inner man, as massa Will say. 'Sides, ef we hab to help 
ourselbes, I don't show so well in de dark as a white man. 
When I comes under de hen-roost, golly ! de chickens on'y 
tinks it's gettin a little more cloudy and dey put deyr heads 
under toder wing and goes right to sleep agin." 

* ; You would, no doubt, be a great help to us Caesar, but 
I don't like to expose you to the danger of capture." 

*• Miss Heloise tinks I had better go," returned Caesar, 
w r ho evidently knew his mistress' mind and seemed anxious 
to gratify her wishes at whatever cost to himself. 

•* Your mistress is an angel !" exclaimed Staples en- 
thusiastically. 



A TALE OF THE REBELLION. 73 

*• Sartin sure ; massa Staples right dis time ebery bit !" 
said Caesar, exhibiting such specimens of nature's dentistry 
as would have excited wild envy in the breast of the king 
of beasts. 

" I move that we take Caosar along," said Staples ; 
" Miss Wolfe has planned well for us thus far." 

" It seems to be her wish and shall be heeded ; but we 
must protect him, her faithful servant, with our lives if 
necessary. Caesar, you may go with us," said Lyon. 

" Tank, you, massa Captain," returned the slave, grin- 
ning with delight, not at the prospect of freedom, of which 
he thought little, but at the dignity of his new position, and 
the knowledge that his young mistress would be pleased 
with the faithful service which he meant to perform. 

" Hopes we won't meet massa Will dough,' he muttered 
to himself. 

The cast oft' uniforms were taken out of the carriage 
and concealed. Caesar took from under the driver's seat a 
small valise well filled with provisions, and from his pocket 
a roll of confederate bills, which latter he handed to Lyon, 
whom he seemed to regard as his master. The carriage 
was then sent back in charge of the other servant, with a 
verbal message to his mistress, and the two young officers 
under the guidance of Caesar set out to find the array of the 
Potomac. 

They made a wide detour around Kichmond, moving 
first in a northwesterly direction and avoiding the travelled 
roads as much as possible. They crossed the James in a 
row-boat, which Caesar knew exactly where to look for, and 
then bearing to the right they approached the railroad. 
They did this with some trepidation, but trusting to the 
friendly darkness and celerity of movement, they went for- 
ward. There were no habitations in their neighborhood, 
but as they neared the track they heard a whistle and the 
thunder of an approaching train. Looking north they saw 



74 THE NORWICH CADETS : 

the headlight of an engine, like a ball of lire in the distance, 
and throwing themselves flat upon the ground they waited 
for it. 

" Hope they won't stop for passengers at this station," 
said Staples. 

The train came up and passed by. The cars were filled 
with soldiers, and by the light within, some bandaged 
heads were visible. 

' ; There has been a battle," said Lyon, %i and they are 
taking to Richmond the wounded that are able to be 
moved." 

" Yes : and perhaps a few prisoners also," said Staples. 
" Well, we have made a little room for them by evacuating 

our quarters." 

As the train disappeared, the three men rose to their 
feet, and dashing across the track they turned their faces to 
the northeast and walked rapidly along, feeling that every 
step took them farther from the dangerous vicinity of the 
railroad, farther from Richmond, and nearer to freedom. 

They travelled on till daylight appeared, and then find- 
ing themselves in a cultivated country where they were 
likely to meet with people, if they continued their journey 
by day, they looked about them' for some place of conceal- 
ment. 

Remote from any house they found a deserted cabin, 
the garden about it grown up to weeds, showing that it had 
not recently been occupied. 

They entered it and, securing the door, sat down to 
rest themselves, and partake of a breakfast from the valise, 
which Caesar had carried suspended from a stick over his 
shoulder. 

" Staples, do you and Caesar lie down and sleep ; I will 
keep watch till you have had your nap. It isn't best for us 
all to be caught napping together." 

" Massa Lyon, you sleep first. I will look sharp, said 
Ceesar, 



A TALE OF THE REBELLION. 75 

" No," replied Lyon, who, knowing the propensity of 
the negro to sleep, did not (hire to trust him to keep the 
first watch. " Go to sleep, Caesar, as quickly as you can ; 
you will need all you can get." 

Without farther remonstrance, the negro and Staples 
stretched themselves on the floor and were soon fast asleep. 

Lyon kept a lookout over the surrounding country, 
while his mind was busy with grateful and tender thoughts 
of Heloise, and with speculations regarding the success 
likely to attend his present endeavor. He saw people at a 
distance, mostly blacks, attending to their usual avocations, 
but no one approached the hiding-place of himself and com- 
panions. 

About eleven o'clock, he touched Staples lightly : The 
" Darty " opened his eyes, and taking in the situation rose 
to his feet. Caesar still slept the sleep of innocence, though 
making a fiendish noise in so doing. 

" Better let him sleep," whispered Lyon, " He can't 
endure the fatigue that we can, and I don't like to trust my 
safety to the watchfulness of a sleepy nigger." 

Staples nodded and took up his position at the little 
window, while Lyon took possession of his vacant couch and 
was soon sleeping as soundly as Caesar himself. 

During the remainder of the long day, Staples 
remained on guard. Impatiently he watched the slow 
motion of the sun as it rolled down the western slope of 
the sky. It seemed to him to move more slowly down its 
inclined plane than he had ever seen it before, as though 
the amount of friction it had to overcome was almost in- 
superable. His eagerness for the shades of night grew 
feverish as the afternoon wore on so lingeringly. 

At last, just before sunset, he observed a party of four 
cavalrymen ride up to the nearest mansion, less than half 
a mile distant. They remained sometime, apparently in 
conversation with the planter, and then Staples saw them 



76 THE NORWICH CADETS • 

turn and ride away. He watched them intently, aiid soon, 
to his dismay, saw them halt and, after a short parley, turn 
their horses' heads in the direction of the cabin. 

On they came directly towards him, though not with 
any haste or apparent motive, and he trusted that they 
■would pass by. But no — they rode up within a few rods of 
the door, and noticing the fresh footsteps around it, they 
halted. 

The noise awoke Lyon. He sprang up, and one glance 
showed him the state of affairs. Immediately he woke 
Caesar, bidding him in a whisper to be silent. When that 
individual comprehended their condition, a gray pallor dif- 
fused itself over his countenance, giving him an unearthly 
appearance. 

A shout was heard from those without, designed to at- 
tract the attention of the inmates. 

No answer was returned, as the occupants of the cabin 
could not at once decide w r hat course it was best to pursue. 

But w T hen two of the troopers dismounted, as though 
to enter, Lyon saw there was no more time for hesitation. 

" Throw off your coat, leave your cap and go out as 
though you lived here," he said to Caesar, " and get them 
away if possible." 

The faithful fellow immediately obeyed and ran out of 
the door in seeming haste to answer the summons. 

" There you are, eh ? just woke up have you ? Who lives 
here?" 

" I does, sah," replied Caesar. 

" All alone ?" 

" No sah ; my ole mamma." 

" Now nigger look a here ; have you seen a couple of 
w T hite men — strangers — around here to-day." 

•* No, massa." 

" If I catch you lying. I'll skin you." 



A tfALE OF "THE REBELLION. 77 

" Lets go in and look," said another. " It don't appear 
as if anybody had lived here before to-day." 

" De ole woman berry sick," said Caesar, trembling with 
apprehension. 

" Hold the horses, you black rascal, never mind the old 
woman." 

Caesar took the horses and the two men rudely pushed 
open the door and swaggered into the cabin. Lyon and 
Staples stood behind the door as it swung in, and as their 
unwelcome visitors entered the dimly lighted apartment, 
they quickly closed it again and each springing at one of 
the astonished rebels, they dealt such tremendous blows 
that both intruders were brought senseless to the floor. 

The noise was heard outside. 

" It's de dog I'se afeard," cried Caesar ; "he neber barks." 

The other two men sprang from their horses, which 
Caesar also grasped, and breathing curses upon him and his 
dog, they rushed with drawn swords to the door. The first 
to cross the threshold received a blow from Staples' dagger 
which made him fall backward out of the doorway, and 
Lyon leaping over his body seized the fourth paralyzed 
trooper with a vice-like grip by the throat and hurled him 
like a log, stunned and bleeding, to the earth. 

It was growing dusky and this struggle had been so 
brief and silent that no attention had been attracted to it. 

" To horse !" said Lyon mounting one and taking 
a second by the bridle. Staples and Caesar followed his ex- 
ample and in less than a minute the three were riding rapid- 
ly away with the four horses, their heads turned due north. 

There was no pursuit, but they rode as though Stuart's 
entire cavalry force was close in their rear. The roads were 
good and by midnight they had left the scene of their last 
adventure far behind them. 

Staples' horse beginning to show signs of exhaustion 
and a disinclination to keep up with the rest, the Captain 



78 THE NORWICH CADETS J 

removed his bridle and other trappings and turned him 
adrift. Then mounting the led horse the party pushed on 
again, though at a somewhat slower rate, owing to the 
fatigue of the horses, the increasing darkness, and the 
unevenness of the country. 

After another hour's ride, as they reached the top of a 
slight acclivity and looked before them, they saw at half a 
mile's distance what seemed to be the light of a camp fire. 

"Are we trapped again?*' inquired Staples as they 
halted. 

" There seems to be a trap there, but we need not step 
into it unless we choose,"' replied Lyon. 

" Golly ! dis nigger will be killed shuah," soliloquized 
Caesar. 

" It is probably a small foraging party," continued 
Lyon. " Shall we go nearer and satisfy our curiosity ?" 

" I don't see the necessity of it," returned his compan- 
ion. " Never throw stones at a hornet's nest. Let us move 
quietly around them at a safe distance." 

In accordance with this prudent counsel they bore to 
the right, describing a semi-circle to avoid the rebel encamp- 
ment. As they came opposite it, the necessities of the 
ground forced them to approach nearer than they liked, but 
they were rewarded for the extra danger by coming upon a 
place where half a dozen horses ware tethered. Silently 
dismounting and finding that the animals were much better 
and fresher than their own, they selected three of the best, 
bridled and mounted them and turning the others loose, 
tDgether with their own jaded beasts, they rode on again at 
a walk till they were at a safer distance, and then once 
more galloped along, highly pleased with their horse trade, 
which was about as honest a transaction of its sort as is 
often seen. 

Caesar was so shaken w r ith suppressed mirth that he 
could hardly keep his seat. 



A TALE OF THE REBELLION. 79 

** Hie ! yah ! yah !" lie ejaculated in a gurgling voice, 
"el clis a'n't de neatest hick! — Beats eberyting — 'spect 

its legle dough." 

On they went at a good rate of speed, directing their 
course by the stars, and when morning dawned they found 
themselves in a wooded and rough country, and with their 
horses pretty nearly used up. 

They turned from the road they had been following 
and rode slowly, as they were obliged to, into a dense 
forest. Here, after removing the bridles, which they thought 
best to retain, they abandaned their horses and then 
climbed on foot up the steep of a mountain, till they had 
gained a situation where they thought they were not likely 
to be discovered. 

Crawling under the branches of some low trees, which 
grew at the base of a large rock where they found a spiing 
of water, they threw their tired bodies on the ground. 
Having satisfied their thirst and devoured the remainder of 
Caesar's store of provisions, they all lay down to sleep, not 
thinking it necessary for either to remain on guard. 

Weary, as they were, they slept soundly till past noon. 
Waking at last, they refreshed themselves again at the 
spring, washing their hands and faces in the clear, cool 
water, then crawling out of their lair, they set out on 
foot through the woods and travelled as fast as the obstruc- 
tions they met with would permit. 

All the afternoon they kept in the shelter of the woods, 
but as the sun sank out of sight they emerged therefrom 
and found themselves in the neighborhood of a large 
plantation, whose extensive negro quarters evinced the 
wealth and importance of the proprietor, and afforded a 
visible cause of the rebellion. 

They were hungry and they constituted themselves a 
committee of ways and means. 



80 THE NORWICH CADETS! 

It was now Caesar's opportunity to make himself 
eminently useful to his beloved mistress's friend, and he ex 
hibited his readiness to improve it. 

" I knows jes' whar de chickens roost in such a place 
as dat, and I tink ef I goes to de quarters de colored folks 
will gib me what I wants ef I tell dem I'se runnin away to 
de norf." 

'* I think you can help us now Caesar, said Lyon ; " we 
must let you try at all events." 

They waited till the lights were all extinguished in 
the "great house," and then all three proceeded cautiously 
to within a short distance of the negro quarters, where 
Lyon gave Caesar his final instructions. 

" You know r your people best, and you may either 
throw yourself on their generosity or help yourself as you 
see fit. We w T ill wait for you here. If you are molested, 
use your pistols if necessary and fight your way back to us 
through, everything. We w r ill come to your aid if you need 
it. Be careful and be quick, and say nothing about us. Let 
them think you are alone." 

Thus, charged, Caesar set off, while Lyon and Staples 
sat down to w T ait for him, though not without considerable 
anxiety. 

" I feel like a rat fooling around a trap after a bit of 
cheese," remarked Staples. 

" We run a risk, I know," returned his companion, 
"but w r e must have something to eat." 

In about half an hour Caesar returned with a well filled 
sack over his shoulder. 

" I've got it," he said gleefully, " and dere's bosses in 
de stable." 

"Fortune seems to favor us," said Staples eagerly ; "I 
move we take them." 

"Agreed," said Lyon, and they proceeded, led by Caesar, 
to the stables. 



A TALE OF THE REBELLION. 81 

Each selected a horse out of a well filled stable and 
led him out. They were spirited animals and made so 
much disturbance, plunging and snorting, while they were 
being got in readiness, that the family was aroused. Lights 
began to move in the house ; the negroes to flock out, and 
two white men soon appeared upon the scene, without coats 
or hats, one of them carrying a gun and the other a lan- 
tern. 

" What's the matter here ?" cried the older, hurrying 
into the midst of the excitement. 

There was a confused murmur of negro voices but no 
intelligible answer. 

As the lantern flashed upon our hero and his compan- 
ions, who were mounting the horses, the planter seemed to 
understand the matter. 

l< A robbery ! and my best horses, too ! Get down you 
villains, or I'll blow you to pieces. Off! I say." 

He drew up his gun. 

" Off, it is — we're going sir," cried Lyon, upon whom 
the weapon was now brought to bear. 

Striking the fiery steed with his boots, he plunged him 
against the enraged planter, bearing him to the ground be- 
fore he could fire, and sending a bullet from his pistol 
through the lantern held by the other man, he fled like the 
wind through the yielding and helpless crowd of negroes, 
with Staples and Csesar following close behind him at the 
same furious speed. 

They were not to get away without a parting volley, 
however. 

The man who had borne the lantern seized the musket 
as it fell from tlfe hand of the overthrown planter and fired 
at random after the fugitives. 

There was a rattle of glass in the sack which Csesar 
carried and a yell of dismay from the sable trooper. 

" Are you hurt !" cried Lyon, checking his horse. • 



82 THE NORWICH CADETS: 

" No massa,'' he answered as he darted past the cap- 
tain, like a thunder cloud on horse back, " but de bottle am 
broke, I reckon." 

" Forward ! then" shouted Staples, " and hang on to 
that bag." 

Forward they sped, while excited orders to mount and 
pursue them were heard in their rear. 

They felt satisfied that the best horses on the planta- 
tion were under them, and they laughed at pursuit as they 
dashed ahead. 



A TALE OP THE REBELLION. 83 



CHAPTER IX. 

COL. WOLFE AT HOME HIS DISCOVERY PRIVATE WAIT ON GUARD 

AN ALARM AND UNEXPECTED ARRIVAL FROM RICHMOND CAPT. 

LYON JOINS HIS REGIMENT THE ARMY MOVES DOWN THE RAP- 
PAHANNOCK THE BATTLE OF FREDERICKSBURG. 

HEN Col. Wolfe had bidden farewell to his 
friend Lyon in Libby Prison, he immediately 
joined his regiment and set out for the north 
with the main body of the rebel army. The in- 
tention was to crush Pope, w T ho had been given 
the command of what was called the Army of 
Virginia out of courtesy to Gen. McClellan, who 
was supposed to be in command of the Army of 
the Potomac. But Gen. Pope's advancement w r as virtually 
a superseding of Gen. McClellan, who had lost the confidence 
of the administration by his disastrous Peninsular Cam- 
paign ; for Halleck was appointed General-in Chief, and as 
such ordered McClellan to support Pope, who had been 
assigned the duty of covering Washington and protecting 
Maryland with its great railroad, while threatening Rich- 
mond from the north. 

In the latter days of August, 1862, was fought the 
second battle on the fated field of Bull Run, while Lyon 
was a prisoner in Richmond. In the prescience of God it 
was, like the first battle, recognized as a defeat to the Union 




84 THE NORWICH CADETS t 

arms, and defeat it became. Whether it was made such by 
unworthy instruments is a question for historians, rather 
than romance writers, to discuss. 

In the battle, young Wolfe distinguished himself by 
his bravery and did his full share of service in obscuring 
the glory of Gen. Pope. 

Pope's army was almost entirely demolished, and now 
in obedience to the demand of a large majority of the 
officers and soldiers of the army of the Potomac, whose con- 
fidence in their former leader was still unshaken, Gen. 
McClellan was re-invested with the chief command. 

After several minor conflicts, the battle of Antietam 
was fought on Sept. 17, — " the bloodiest day that America 
ever saw." The battle was a victory to the North, but 
dearly purchased and not at all decisive. We held the 
ground, but Lee retired strong enough to fight some other 
day. 

In this battle, the reckless Wolfe was severely wounded, 
and sent back to Richmond to recover. He was on board 
the very train which had passed the three fugitives on the 
night of their escape from Richmond. 

When the Colonel learned from his sister of the escape 
of his friend fi-om prison, he was much surprised, but he 
could not help showing a certain satisfaction at hearing of 
his old chum's daring exploit. Heloise did not think him 
very sorry that Lyon had not been re-captured. When he 
afterward found out that Caesar had mysteriously disap- 
peared about the same time, a light seemed to break in 
upon him, and further conversation with his sister made the 
matter clearer to him. He did not, however, attempt to 
win her confidence or force her to confession, and at heart 
he was pleased that his sister had chosen Tom Lyon as the 
object of her love. 

Let us now return with the speed of thought to the 
North, while our three fugitives are making their way thither 



A TALE OE THE REBELLION. 85 

on the confiscated horses of the Virginia planter. After 
the battle of Antietam there was little fighting for a couple 
of months, for the same number of reasons : Lee was not 
anxious for a fight and McClellan was too cautious to take 
any chances. There was a southward movement of the two 
opposing armies from the bloody soil of Maryland, made 
in parallel lines and on opposite sides of the Blue Ridge. 
The latter part of October McClellan occupied Snicker's 
Gap and Manassas and had advanced as far as Warrenton 
before his active participation in the war was brought to a 
close. 

The Vermont Brigade showed by its wasted numbers 
the hard and dangerous service it had seen, and the gallant 
manner in which it had discharged its duties. Captain 
Nason had been sent home so severely wounded that he 
could never draw his sword again. All the others of our 
old friends had not only survived their perils but had 
escaped unhurt, but their bronzed faces and the diminished 
form of private Hank Wait, who had left sixty pounds of his 
flesh upon the Peninsula, bore witness to the fact that they 
had not escaped their full share of hardship. 

One night, before the southward movement of the army 
had begun and while it was waiting for the rebel Jeb. 
Stuart to ride around it, as he had done once before, private 
Wait was stationed on picket. 

" On your care," said Lieut. Joe Safford, addressing 
Hank, " depends perhaps the safety of the army and the 
fate of the country. I therefore caution you not to snore 
as loudly as usual, else you will be likely to attract the at- 
tention of the enemy and furnish them a sure guide to our 
position." 

Picket duty is not the most pleasant experience of a 
soldier's life, and as the hours lagged, as though loth to 
depart, while nothing occurred to disturb the silence and 
darkness of the night, Hank's thoughts became anything 



86 



THE NORWICH CADETS! 



but cheerful companions, and he began to wish that some- 
thing would happen to relieve the monotony and prove his 
vigilance. 

The wish was scarcely formed, and not fully endorsed 
by his better judgment, when he heard footsteps approach- 
ing and the sound of voices. As the disturbers of his quiet 
came nearer and got within what he considered a proper 
distance, or an improper nearness, he hailed them : 

" Who goes there ?" 

" Friends." 

" Halt, friends ; let one advance and give the counter- 
sign." 

There was a halt and when one came forward, speaking 
as he came — 

" We have not the countersign ; we are prisoners 
escaped from the enemy, and wish to be taken into the 
Union camp." 

" Halt ! or I fire !" cried Hank, fearing treachery, and 
bringing his piece to his shoulder. 

" If you are not Hank Wait, then I'm a rebel, so ground 
that musket," returned the threatened stranger, walking 
rapidly forward instead of obeying the order to halt. 

Hank's fears were somewhat relieved by this familiar 
address, and he permitted the unknown to approach him. 
When he recognized the voice and form of Capt. Lyon, he 
dropped his gun and seized his friend with both hands. 

"Why, Tom, where did you rain from ?" 

" From Richmond, and I brought a piece of the cloud 
along with me. Staples and Csesar, come," he called to his 
companions, and they soon appeared. 

" This is the cloud, I suppose," said Hank, looking at 
Cresar. 

In a short time the three fugitives from Rebeldom 
were among their friends in camp, where they were warmly 
welcomed. They had to narrate their adventures and were 



A TALE OF THE REBELLION. 87 

listened to with interest. From their tale it appeared that 
they reached Aquia Creek a few days after we left them dash- 
ing away on the planter's horses, and without any incident 
worthy of mention. There their dangers ended. Learning 
the location of their regiments, they resolved to report 
themselves in camp without delay, and getting transporta- 
tion up the Potomac they rejoined the army as we have 
seen. 

Soon after this, as we have said, the army began its 
southward movement, but the advance had got no further 
than "Warrenton, when Gen. McClellan was relieved of the 
Command and ordered home to Trenton, N. J. 

Gen. Burnside now succeeded to the command of the 
army of the Potomac, Nov. 8, 1862, and immediately com- 
menced to move his forces down the Rappahannock to 
Fredericksburg. Lee moved his army in a parallel line 
down the south bank of the river, ready to resist the cross- 
ing of the Union trooj^s wherever they should attempt it. 

Burnside laid a pontoon across the river to Fredericks- 
burgh and another about two miles below, much of the 
work being done under the fire of the enemy and at a loss 
of three hundred men. The city was then cleared of the 
enemy and a few prisoners taken, and our army, 100,000 
strong, had possession of both banks of the river. Lee's 
army of 80,000 men was posted along the bluffs for a dis- 
tance of five or six miles, a very advantageous position. 
Three hundred rebel guns were stationed on the eminences, 
in a position to rake every part of the ground by which 
they could be approached. Immediately in the rear of 
Fredericksburg stood Marye's Hill, which the rebels held 
and which they had fortified from its base" to its summit. 
At the base was a stone wall behind which was stationed a 
brigade of infantry, and above this battery rose above bat- 
tery to the frowning summit, ready to pour down a deadly 
storm of shot upon our advancing columns. 



88 THE NORWICH CADETS: 

Burn side certainly showed himself unfit for command 
when he ordered his brave men to certain death that there 
awaited them ; but he gave the command and on the 13th 
day of December the attack began. The brave Irish Brig- 
ade under Gen. Meagher dashed itself six times against 
that fiery hill, and of the 1200 men led into action but 280 
app eared on parade next morning. But the slaughter of 
the gallant Irishmen was useless, for the position could not 
be carried. 

The fighting was not all at this point, however. Rey- 
nolds and Meade engaged the enemy on the left, farther 
down the river, and the Vermont Brigade crossed the lower 
pontoon to take part in the conflict which raged in the 
neighborhood of Lee's headquarters. 

The rebel cavalry came into action here, and the famous 
Black Horse Cavalry, which made itself a name at the first 
battle of Bull Run, hurled itself against the steady front of 
the Green Mountain Boys. Men and horses were mingled 
in wild confusion ; swords and bayonets chipping with 
blood flashed in the sunlight ; shouts and groans and the 
reports of muskets and pistols filled the air. 

"Make infantry of them," cried private Wait as he 
bayoneted a horse and proceeded to knock its rider on the 
head. 

His advice and example being followed, there were 
more horseless riders than riderless horses that escaped from 
the field. Most of the shots fired were aimed at the horses, 
and when, after a desperate but unsuccessful attempt to 
throw the Old Brigade into confusion, the enemy withdrew. 
There were scores of horses left behind never to be ridden 
into battle agaib. 

" I'm afraid black horses will get scarce in Virginia if 
they ain't more careful of them," said Hank, as his company 
re-formed its rather uneven line, and in obedience to com- 
mand turned to meet and overcome new dangers, 



A TALE OF THE REBELLION. 89 

Thus all day long the battle raged in different parts of 
the extensive field. Sometimes success at particular points 
waited on our arms, but the result of the entire conflict was 
greatly against us. It was a defeat to the Union army, 
and when night closed the slaughter, we had lost 15,000 
men and gained not one inch of ground, or any material 
advantage. 

Burnside's attempt had proved a bloody and costly 
failure. For the next two days the two hostile armies stood 
facing each other, neither daring to attack, and then our 
army was withdrawn to the north bank of the river, and 
Fredericksburg abandoned. 

On the return of the troops, Csesar, who had prudently 
refrained from crossing the river, made his appearance 
among his friends and seemed pleased to find them un^ 
harmed. 

" Ain't you sorry you didn't go over, Caesar ?" inquired 
Hank. 

" Not berry, sah ? de air am more salubricarious on dis 
side." 

"But there was a chance to win glory," persisted 
Hank. 

" Neber cared for sich tings," replied Caesar, loftily. 
'• Weren't you just a little afraid of being shot ?" 
" No, sah ; not 'fraid ; but Ise wuf money, an' my missis 
tole me to be careful ob myself. White men don't cos' 
nuffin, and won't sell for nuflin, but when you shoot me, 
dere's a tousan' dollars frowed away." 

" It's just as well, my colored friend, that you didn't 
risk your precious form," said Dr. Sanord, who happened to 
be passing by; "for there wasn't glory enough to go 
around among the white men. Our captain, your master, 
took the lion's share, which was quite natural and proper 
for a Lyon to do." 



90 THE NORWICH CADETS : 

The pontoons were taken up — the enemy re occupied 
Fredericksburg, and hostilities were reduced to picket-firing 
across the river. 

Capt. Lyon had distinguished himself by his coolness 
and bravery and was soon after promoted to major. 

Burnside's usefulness as commander of the army of the 
Potomac was at an end, and he was soon after released from 
the command, though he was on the eve of putting in 
execution a new plan for the capture of Richmond. 

Nearly all our commanders seemed to labor under and 
to be governed by the impression that the taking of Rich- 
mond would prove the end of the rebellion, while to a non- 
military mind it appears that the mere capture of that city 
would have resulted in nothing more serious to the rebel 
cause than the necessity of removing the rebel government 
to some other locality. Time proved that the only practical 
method of conquering the Confederacy was to wear it out — 
to kill, wound and take prisoners its fighting men, to 
deplete its treasury and ruin its credit — to cripple all its 
resources so that it could no longer' keep an effective army 
in the field. Every rebel soldier disabled for service, every 
thousand dollars spent in equipping an army for the field, 
every week of time during which they were obliged to 
maintain their cause at great expense, helped on the final 
consummation. When men and money and needful sup- 
plies began to grow scarce, the rebellion, which had been .a 
mere shell for some time, suddenly collapsed. k 80 long as 
an effective blockade was kept up, it didn't matter much 
where the fighting was done, if only it was done. 



A TALE OF THE REBELLION. 91 



CHAPTER X. 

CHANCELLORSVILLE AND GETTYSBURG STANNARD's BRIGADE — OUR 

HEROES MEET AGAIN IN BATTLE STAPLES TURNS THE TIDE 

• C2ESAR SEEKS HIS WOUNDED MASTER ON THE FIELD THE 

SLAVE'S AFFECTION FOR HIS MASTER A MYSTERY TO PRIVATE 

WAIT IN HOSPITAL CONVALESCENT A SURPRISE. 

E N . Hooker assumed command of the army 

]of the Potomac, Jan. 26th, 1863. The army 

was in a bad condition. The men were dis- 

x heartened by the disasters they had suffered 




and desertions were frequent. General Hooker 
wisely spent two months in disciplining and 
inspiriting his troops and with such success that 
at the end of that time he had an army of 123,- 
OOCPmen, who had confidence in their general and were 
ready once more to meet the foe. The battle of Chancel- 
lorsville, which was to try their courage, was fought on 
nearly the same field as that of Fredericksburg, the scene of 
their late defeat. 

Gen. Hooker mapped his intended movement so well 
that he succeeded in crossing the Rappahannock without 
any loss or opposition whatever. He was confident of 
victory, and declared that he held Lee's army in onejmnd 
and Richmond in the other. Seven days elapsed from the 
crossing to the re-crossing of the river — days filled up with 
important movements and heavy fighting. The first col- 



92 THE NORWICH CADETS ! 

lision was rather to the advantage of the rebels. The next 
day Stonewall Jackson with 25,000 men, having greatly 
changed his position by marching all day and concealing 
his movements from observation, appeared in a part of the 
field where he w T as not expected, and suddenly emerging 
from the woods he burst upon the 11th corps near nightfall, 
routing it and scattering the panic stricken fugitives, who 
carried dismay wherever they fled with their tidings of 
disaster. Pouring down the Chancellorsville road they 
threatened to infect the whole army with the fright which 
possessed them. 

Pleasanton, with his artillery, arrested the tide of dis- 
aster which threatened to engulf all. Ordering Major 
Keenan with 500 men to charge the rebel 25,000, which he 
did at the cost of his life ten minutes after, Pleasanton had 
time to get his guns in position and double-shotted. Three 
times the rebels charged upon him — once to within fifty 
yards of his guns — but each time they were repulsed with 
tremendous slaughter. 

In this engagement Stonewall Jackson fell mortally 
wounded, between nine and ten o'clock at night, and 
Pleasanton, supported by Sickles' infantry, was left master 
of the position. 

All night operations continued. At midnight Gen. 
Sickles advanced a division and ordered a charge down the 
plank road, which drove back the rebels and recovered a 
part of the ground lost by rout of the 11th corps. At day- 
light, however, he was ordered by Hooker to fall back on 
Chancellorsville, which he did slowly and without loss, 
although closely followed by the enemy. 

It w T as Sunday, May 3d, and the rebels, led by J. E. B. 
Stuart, dashed themselves upon Sickles' corps with such 
gallantry and utter recklessness of life that they deserved 
success, if gallantry alone can ever observe it. Up to the 
very mouths of our cannon they charged, but the discharge 



A TALE OF THE REBELLION. 93 

from forty guns, ably handled, cut frightful swaths through 
their close ranks. The Union troops fought them until 
their ammunition was exhausted, and then repelled five 
fierce charges with their bayonets. A message was then 
sent to headquarters for relief, but in vain, as Hooker had 
been rendered insensible by a cannon ball, which struck a 
pillar of the Chancellorsville house, against which he was 
leaning. The hard pressed corps was forced to fall back 
and soon tjie whole army was withdrawn a mile northward, 
leaving Chancellorsville to the enemy. 

The fight was nearly all over in this part, but Sedg- 
wick, who had crossed the river two or three miles below 
Fredericksburg, with the intention of falling on Lee's rear 
and crushing the rebel army between himself and Hooker, 
now renewed the contest, which raged as fiercely as before. 

The Vermont Brigade, belonging to the 6th corps, was 
with Sedgwick. Maj. Lyon was in command of his regi- 
ment, in the absence of any superior officer. The troops 
began their march from the pontoons at night, and fighting 
every inch of the way, entered Fredericksburg at daylight 
Monday morning. 

The rebel troops were concentrated on Marye's hill, 
which Burnside had vainly attempted to carry in the former 
battle, and where the Irish Brigade had been sacrificed. 

The first attempt to clear the rifle-pits at the foot of 
the hill was repulsed, and another plan was resolved upon. 
Just before noon three storming columns, one of them led 
by Maj. Lyon and composed entirely of Green Mountain 
Boys, advanced with resolute step against Cemetery hill, 
which it was thought best to attack first. 

Under a heavy fire of artillery they charged up the hill 
without halting or wavering. Closing up their ranks as 
often as they were broken by the fire they sustained, they 
pushed on with determined faces, and eyes fixed on the 
summit of that hill as the goal they must reach. 



94 THE NORWICH CADETS t 

"Steady, boys! forward!" cried Lyon at every dis- 
charge of lead which rained upon them. 

The very tone of his voice gave assurance that the 
order would be obeyed. Up the height they rushed, our 
hero at their head, while the tall form of Lieut. Joe Safford 
kept close in his rear like an elongation of his shadow. 

" This is worse than climbing Atherton's hill, after 
the cows," eooly remarked Joe. referring to the home cow- 
pasture. 

" I wish I was there, though.'* said Hank, who was in 
the front rank and heard the remark. ''I'd rather swallow 
raspberries, with the worms on, than these cannon balls." 

Still upward they pressed with unabated courage till 
only a few yards separated them from the enemy. 

"Upon them, boys!" shouted Lyon, waving his sword 
and dashing upon the rebel gunners as though he had been 
shot from a mortar. 

His sword flashed and writhed like a fiery serpent and 
death followed its every stroke. His men swarmed after 
him over the crest of the hill and a few seconds decided the 
cpiestion of mastery. The fight was won, and 200 prisoners 
with guns and camp equipage fell into the hands of the 
victors. A rousing cheer announced the fact to all con- 
cerned. 

But the victory was not gained without cost. That 
bloody slope — fitly named cemetery hill — was scattered 
over with the dead bodies of brave men, and in the very 
moment of triumph the gallant Safford sank down on the 
height, severely wounded. 

But there was no time to mourn for the dead, and 
scarce any to care for the wounded. Hank was permitted to 
remain behind to care for his old school-mate and boyhood's 
friend, Lieut. Joe, and the storming column rushed ou 
against Bfarye's hill like a resistless wave at floodtidp, bear- 
ing a n before it. 



A TALE OF THE REBELLION. 05 

The second height was taken like the first, and glory 
rested on the banners of the Old Brigade. 

Still onward rushed Sedgwick's victorious corjos on the 
track of the retiring rebels for three or four miles, when the 
latter halted and gave battle. Their position proved too 
strong to be carried, and when Lee. having compelled 
Hooker to retire from his front, turned the bulk of his army 
upon Sedgwick, oar troops were forced back before the 
superior force brought against them, and finally during the 
night Sedgwick was obliged to retreat across the river with 
heavy loss. 

The next night Hooker himself crossed to the north 
side of the river with the balance of our army and the 
battle of Chancellorsville was ended. The losses of the 
enemy were doubtless as great as our own, but for the 
second time they had driven us across the Rhappahannock, 
and with some show of reason they claimed the victory. 

Our hero, for gallant conduct, was promoted to the 
rank of colonel, and Hank would have been ennobled by 
being raised to the rank of corporal, but he distinctly de- 
clined the honor. 

" I ain't ambitious," said he : "I don't hanker after office. 
In my humble sphere I am content to remain and do my 
duty to my country ; but who knows what might happen if 
I should accept promotion ? I might not be satisfied till I 
had got to be general- in-chief, and had ruined my country 
by proving the destroyer of its liberty. Napoleon was 
spoiled by being a corporal. If he hadn't been corporal, 
he never would have been general or emperor, and the pop- 
ulation of the earth would have been, considerably greater 
than it is now. If he had always been a private soldier, 
the blood spilled to gratify his ambition would have been 
happily saved to the world and permitted to flow in peace- 
ful streams through the veins of quiet citizens. I don't 
want to be a second Napoleon, and I won't. Through love 
# 



96 THE NORWICH CADETS! 

of c Jim try I turn my back on this temptation. All I ask 
in return is that hereafter a grateful people shall chisel 
upon my gravestone — 'Hank Wait, private. A patriot rests 
here.' " 

Lieut. SafforcTs wounds were not mortal, but they 
were such as to incapacitate him for service, at least for a 
while. "Under the care of his brother, the doctor, he grew 
strong enough to make the journey to Vermont, and he was 
sent home to complete his recovery with the hope of a 
speedy return. 

A month of inaction ensued, and then Lee put his army 
in motion for an invasion of Maryland and Pennsylvania. 
When it became evident that an important movement was 
ofoingf on, there was considerable skirmishing and some 
engagements but no great battle. 

The rebel army, passing up the south bank of the Rap- 
pahannock, crossed the Blue Ridge into the Shedandoah 
valley and moved nortlrward, taking Winchester in the w r ay, 
threatening Harper's Ferry and even Washington, before 
Hooker began to move in force. The rebels had a week the 
start, and fording the Potomac they struck across Mary- 
land and up as far as Chambersburg, Pa., without meeting 
any serious opposition. 

- On the eve of the great battle, Hooker and Halleck 
disagreed in regard to the propriety of holding Harper's 
Ferry, and Hooker, at his own request, was relieved of the 
command, and Gen. Meade was appointed his successor, 
taking command of the army June 28th, 1863. 

Gettysburg, Pa., was a village of 3,000 inhabitants, 
and there Lee concentrated his army, and there the battle 
was fought, although Meade had maneuvered at a point 
some fifteen miles southeast of there. 

It is not our purpose to give a detailed account of the 
battle, which is a matter of history, but to relate those in- 
cidents of it in which our characters were concerned, 



A TALE OF THE REBELLION. 07 

The part which the troops of Vermont took in this 
decisive battle reflects credit upon them, and is a matter of 
just pride to the State which sent them into the field. 

The 2d brigade of Vermonters, composed of the 12th, 
13th, 14th, 15th and 16th regiments, 9 months mon, under 
Gen. Stannard, performed the most gallant service, and in 
the opinion of Major Gen. Doubleday the country is mainly 
indebted to them for the final victory of the third of July. 

Two different times charging on the flank of advancing 
rebel columns, they scooped them en masse into our lines, 
and the 16th regiment, Col. Veazey, in the last charge, 
captured from the enemy the colors of their regiments. 
Although it was to most of them their first battle, they fought 
with the coolness of veterans. Their movements were 
executed in the open field, under heavy fire and with the 
promptness and decision of batallion drill. They ended the 
contest in the center and substantially closed the battle. 
General Stannard himself was badly wounded, but refused 
to leave the field until the contest was over. 

The Old Brigade, of which Lyon's regiment formed a 
part, was with the rest of the 6th corps at Manchester, 
thirty miles away, on July 1st. Receiving orders, they 
began their march for Gettysburg at 7 p. m. They passed 
over a rough and hilly country, marching as long as they 
could see to do so to any advantage, and finally halted on a 
mountain side to rest and wait for daylight. Their rations 
were nearly exhausted, but the spirits of the men, inured 
to hardship, were lively and hopeful. 

Officers and men threw themselves down together, 
wherever they halted, and partook of such refreshments as 
their haversacks afforded. Col. Lyon, Captain Merritt, and 
Dr Safford and Hank sat down together. 

" Supper is ready, gentlemen," said Hank, producing 
his last hardtack. " Tins is the first course, just to give 



98 THE NORWICH CADETS I 

you an appetite for what isn't likely to follow. Have a bite 
Colonel?" 

The Colonel declined, as did his companions, and Hank 
disposed of the whole first course without any seeming 
difficulty, but did not seem quite surfeited. 

'• Doctor." he requested, be so kind as to help me to a 
portion of that turkey in front of you — the second joint 
please." 

u Pray restrain your voracity, private Wait, returned 
the doctor. " As your physician. I feel it my duty to warn 
you against overloading your stomach. Overeating is the 
curse of the country an -J is making a nation of dyspeptics. 
According to such medical authorities as Dr. Dio Starvem, 
a single hardtack, such as you have just devoured with such 
improper haste, is quite as much nourishment as any man 
ought to receive after 12 o'clock noon." 

u Thank you doctor : I am very glad I haven't eaten 
any more, and I hope you will continue to look carefully 
after my health. I shall write to my mother in regard to 
your kindness, and I doubt not her anxiety will be much 
relieved." 

" It would, I think, have been much better if you had 
eaten nothing at all at this hour of the night."' 

" Give me an emetic, doctor, and I will be more careful 
after this." 

"I hope," said Merrifct, "that Dr. Starvem won't be 
appointed commissary general : but to change the subject 
from eating, of which there is little to do, to lighting, of 
which we have always had enough, what do you think. 
Colonel, is the prospect of our being in season to have a hand 
in the expected battle ?" 

" The prospect is dark. I am afraid we shall be late 
for the main battle, but there will probably be work for us 
when we get there. I never knew the Old Brigade to fall 
short of its full share," 



A TALE OF THE REBELLION. 99 

- We shall be on the move as soon as it is light 
enough," said the doctor, " and if you have any respect for 
my judgment, you will stop talking and stop thinking if 
possible, and get all the sleep you can.'" 

" Your views in regard to sleep, though not quite so 
novel to me as those you have expressed in regard to diet, 
appear to be equally correct, and I shall govern myself 
accordingly," said Hank, stretching himself on the hillside 
at an angle of forty-five degrees with the plane of the 
horizon. 

" I advise you," he continued, after some efforts to 
neutralize the force of gravity which was drawing him down 
the inclined plane of his earthly couch, ;; to stick your toes 
well into the ground if you don't wish to find yourselves 
at the foot of the hill in the morning." 

The tired soldiers were soon asleep, and slept soundly 
in spite of their uncomfortable lodgings till daylight 
roused them to resume their march to the field, where the 
work of death was already going on. 

They arrived at Gettysburg, weary enough, in the 
afternoon of the second day and were soon after thrown into 
the conflict. 

Col. Lyon's regiment was ordered to the front to 
relieve a regiment which had exhausted its ammunition, 
and at the same time on the rebel side, Col. Wolfe and his 
regiment of Georgians was ordered on to the field for a 
similar reason. 

As the opposing troops were but a short distance 
apart, Wolfe recognized his old friend and held his hat aloft 
on his sword-point to attract attention. Lyon saw and 
courteously saluted him, and then these almost brothers 
began their fight. 

It was Georgia against Vermont, and both sides were 
determined to win. The Norwich Cadets met now for the 



1130 THE NORWICH cadets: 

second time in battle, and neither of them had the slightest 
idea of yielding to the other. 

Volley after volley was exchanged, and men fell on 
both sides. Lyon received a bullet through his right hand ; 
seizing his sword in his left, he still encouraged his men. 

"Charge, Georgians!'' cried Wolfe, and at the word his 
men sprang forward with deafening yells. 

The order was plainly heard by the northerners. 
"Charge, Vermonters!" cried Lyon, before the former 
order had fairly died away, and w r aving his sword he rushed 
at the head of his ready followers to meet the coming 
wave. The combatants met with a shock and were mingled 
in a contest at close quarters. 

The two friends avoided each other, but they spared no 
others. 

" Down with them !" exclaimed Lyon, cheering on his 
men as, bleeding from his wounds, he fought left-handed 
with deadly effect against all who opposed him. 

"Down it is," responded Hank, the unpromoted, as 
his bayonet transfixed a southern captain, whose uplifted 
sword in another instant would have cleft the colonel's 
head. 

The Georgians, animated by the example of their com- 
mander, fought with reckless fury, and as one of them by a 
sudden bayonet thrust w T hich Hank (who kept close by the 
side of his wounded colonel) was not quick enough to pre- 
vent, though he took a deadly revenge for it, brought Lyon 
to the ground, it seemed as though the battle would go in 
Wolfe's favor. He saw his friend fall and rushed to the 
spot to save his life if possible. 

At that critical juncture a New Hampshire regiment 
appeared upon the scene and Capt. Staples vnth his com- 
pany dashed into the midst of the fight. The Georgians 
were soon scattered — some being taken prisoners — but their 
colonel, scorning to flee and fighting to the last, w r as struck 



A TALE OF THE REBELLION. 101 

senseless to the ground, without having been recognized by- 
Staples. 

It was nearly dark and the fighting was ended for the 
day. The Vermonters bore away the body of their wound- 
ed colonel. 

Under the skillful treatment of Dr. Safford, Lyon was 
restored to consciousness and his wounds properly dressed. 
As soon as he had collected his thoughts he spoke to Csesar, 
who with Hank was watching over him, and told him that 
his young master William, Col. Wolfe, was probably lying 
on the field of battle either dead or wounded. 

The affectionate negro shed tears at this intelligence. 

" Massa Lyon, let me go an' find my young massa." 

,; Yes ; go with him, Hank," said Lyon. 

Accordingly Hank and Csesar set out together for the 
lately contested field, carrying a stretcher with them, and 
full canteens of water. The evening Avas sufficiently light 
and they found their way to the spot without difficulty. 
Stepping over the dead, both Mend and foe, looking in this 
and that pale upturned face, or stopping to give a drink to 
some groaning wounded rebel, they sought for the young 
colonel. 

An exclamation from Csesar brought Hank to his side. 
He was bending over the senseless form of his master, one 
side of whose face was covered with blood which had flowed 
from a wound in the head. 

" Oh ! de good Lord spare him ! Am he dead, massa 
Wait ?" 

Hank examined the young officer and decided that he 
was not dead. He had received an ugly blow on the head, 
but no necessarily mortal wound was discovered. 

Ceesar seemed much relieved when Hank expressed the 
opinion that his master would live, but the Vermonter 
could hardly understand the affection of the slave, for one 



102 ME NORWICH cadets: 

who claimed the ownership of his body and the right to 
all the fruits of his labor. 

" I feel pretty certain,'' he remarked to himself, rather 
more than to Caesar, " that the only stretcher I should furn- 
ish to the man who called himself my master, would be in 
the shape of a hempen cord."' 

Without further delay they carefully raised the wound- 
ed man and placed him on the stretcher, and proceeded to 
carry him within the Union lines. Arriving there in safety 
with their burden, they placed Wolfe in the care of the sur- 
geons, who succeeded in restoring him to consciousness. 
As his eyes rested with a look of recognition on the dusky 
but familiar face of Caesar, that devoted servant rolled his 
eyes upward aud ejaculated : 

" Bress de Lord ! bress de Lord ! Massa William, you's 
a gwine to get well," and the happy fellow wept tears of joy. 

The wounded were in due time removed to the hospital 
in Washington, and our two heroes occupied adjacent beds. 
They were soon out of danger, though there was no pros- 
pect of their taking part in any further operations during 
that campaign. 

Caesar nursed them both with the utmost fidelity, and 
seemed never to tire of rendering them every service in his 
power. Night and day he was at hand whenever wanted, 
and his dark face shone with the light of joy whenever there 
appeared a decided improvement in the condition of his 
patients. 

As the two Mends began to convalesce, and they re- 
sumed the familiar intercourse of cadet life, the days passed 
pleasantly away and the last two years seemed an interval 
of dreams. To men of active temperament, life confined 
to the narrow limits, and jostled by the unpleasant associa- 
tions of a hospital, has not many attractions ; but they had 
only to shut their eyes and listen to each other's voices to 
be transported, in imagination, back to their old room at 



A TALE OF THE REBELLION. 103 

Norwich ; and these days of their recovery and the gradual 
return of strength were the happiest they had known since 
their parting at the University. It was the calm after the 
storm, and they experienced a quietude of spirit born of 
the serenity around them. 

•' That was a neat trick of yours, Torn, in leaving Rich- 
mond," remarked Wolfe one day. 

"A Yankee trick, but hardly worth patenting," replied 
Lyon. 

" The Yankee is an inventive animal." 

'• I guess you reckon rightly ; but I can't see how any 
man, even a Georgian, could remain shut up in prison, as 
I was. without trying to discover some way of escape." 

" In your situation at that time, the idea of escape 
would never have occurred to me." 

••And I presume the idea of getting away from here 
has not entered your tropical brain ; but if I were in your 
situation I should be revolving in my mind some plan to 
get across the Potomac." 

" I never was good at getting out of a scrape, but I 
am first rate at getting into one. There is nothing of your 
Y'ankee cuteness in my composition : it isn't indigenous to 
the southern soil." 

; - It is handy though sometimes,'' said Tom. 

" Extremely useful, I admit ; I am glad there are a 
few Yankees in the world. Nobody but a Boston Yankee 
would ever have thought of catching the lightning, and no- 
body born out of New r England would ever have dreamed 
of teaching it to talk. 

" It's a pity your compatriots, or fellow rebels, don't 
share your admiration of the Yankee. I fear you are not 
an orthodox confederate." 

'• I lived too long in Vermont, I think. But tell me, 
how did you get out of Libby ?" 

ki I dropped out." 



104 THE NORWICH CADETS! 

" That was easy enough after you got on the outside, 
but how was that done ?" 

" I whittled out with a jack knife." ' 

" I might have known it. A jack knife is implement 
enough for a Yankee, no matter what the job before him. 
It is a waste of money to purchase guns and ammunition 
for your troops. If they were only armed w T ith jack knives 
they would whittle the Confederacy into shavings in a 
single campaign." 

" It pains me. that I am not able truthfully to say some- 
thing complimentary in return, " said Lyon ; but whither 
tends this flood of praise ? Can I tell you anything more in 
regard to my escape from your delightful country ? Would 
you hear the narrative of my wanderings ? It is another 
Odyssy. 

< k I would hear how it is that I. find a piece of my 
property, called Caesar, in your possession.*' 

" Well, replied Lyon, beginning to suspect that his 
friend had some knowledge of the assistance he had received 
in leaving rebel dom. " I fell in with Caesar after I had 
vacated my apartment at Libby, and as he expressed a 
desire to travel and see the world and to give a finishing 
touch to his education, I took him under my protection, 
and brought him with me to the United States. If you 
wish to regain your property, we have a fugitive slave law." 

" I don't think I shall avail myself of it. I am glad to 
find Caesar here. But I have, been in Richmond, Tom, since 
you left it so suddenly." 

"You have— and how is — did you find your people 
we ll ? — Miss Heloise is the only one of your family that I 
have the honor to know." 

" All quite well, thank you. My sister told me some- 
thing of her intercourse with yourself and your fellow- 
prisoner and tried to make me think, Tom, that your 
escape was a surprise to her. I did not question her much. 



A TALE OF THE REBELLION. 



105 



not caring to develop a case of treason in my family, and 
allowed her to think that I believed what she wished to 
have me." 

" She may have suspected my intention to escape, but 
I never divulged it to her, as I did not wish either to lead 
her into treason, as you call it, or to impose upon her the 
performance of what she might esteem the painful yet im- 
perative duty to betray me." 

ki Betray you ! I truly believe my sister would sell the 
whole Confederacy and give away all my niggers, to help a 
certain friend of mine out of difficulty." 

•• Your frankness, Bill, deserves to be reciprocated. I 
assure you that I regard my capture on the peninsula as 
the most fortunate event of my life, since it brought me 
acquainted with Heloise. I admire and respect her as the 
embodiment of all the higher graces and virtues of her sex. 
I feel that I am all unworthy of her, and that it is asking 
much of your friendship to ask you, as I do, to smile upon 
my suit ; but a man in love is always unreasonable." 

" You have my hearty good wishes, old friend, and my 
full consent to call me brother. And now, since we under- 
stand each other, in this matter, I wish to ask you what has 
become of our Mend Condon, the gigantic and heroic." 

* ; As I told you at Richmond, he left the University to 
attend medical lectures at Albany, but I have not seen him 
since. He wrote me two or three times, each time telling 
of some astounding cure which he had just performed. He 
talked learnedly of the arterial system, mentioning by name 
as I remember, and thus showing his familiarity with the 
subject, the aorta and the auxiliary and brachial arteries. 
Penetrating still deeper, he spoke of the parietal bone, the 
clavicle, humerus, carpus and metacarpus, phalanges, 
femur, tibia and fibula. It was my fault, I suppose, that 
£he correspondence w r as not kept up." 

N 



106 THE NORWICH CADETS : 

" You didn't appreciate his learning. What disgusted 
you would have been rich food for me. Mat approached 
nearer to my conception of Falstan* than any other person 
I ever met. He is probably now the mighty man in some 
small village ; overtopping and overawing the multitude : 
slaying every third patient and laying the blame on Provi- 
dence." 

" No doubt," said Lyon ; " and with his evening pipe 
he tells to gaping admirers in the village grocery tales of 
cadet life in which he figures as hero. He tells how at one 
time he fought and conquered, singlehanded, a score of 
Darties, and how on another occasion he saved two friends 
of his, Wolfe and Lyon, from a beating and brought them 
off unhurt.'' 

While the two sick men were enjoying a feeble laugh 
over this picture of the imagination, a heavy step was heard 
approaching. A gruff voice came to their ears and turning 
their eyes to the quarter from which it came, they both 
gazed for some moments in speechless astonishment. 



A TALE OF THE REBELLION. 107 



CHAPTER XI. 

DR. CONDON AND HIS TWO PATIENTS— WOLFE EXCHANGED— AID AND 
COMFORT TO THE ENEMY LYON JOINS HIS REGIMENT AT FAIR- 
FAX COURT HOUSE— BRUSHING THE DUST OF A CENTURY FROM 
THE RECORDS OF THE COURT— UNCLE SAM VS. J. DAVIS ET. AL. 

M I awake ?" inquired Wolfe, rubbing his eyes 
and looking again. " And if awake, is the figure 
I see the air-drawn form of a disordered mind, 
or flesh and blood reality !" 

" It is he, replied Lyon. t ; Hide your face 
partially and observe his motions. I think we 
will surprise him when he reaches us."' 

Down the long alley came the burly form of 
no other than Dr. Mat. Condon. Stopping here 
and there at the beds on either hand, he examined with a 
wise look the hurts of the occupants, asked a few questions, 
and gave some directions to the nurse in attendance, with a 
tone and manner which implied that a strict following of 
his directions would insure a recovery in every case. 

Approaching the place where his friends lay in ambush 
for him, he stopped and turned first to Lyon. 

-Well, my man, how are you to-day?*' he inquired in 
a cheerful tone. 

" Poorly, poorly, doctor," replied Lyon in a faint voice. 




108 THE NORWICH CADETS: 

" What is your difficulty ?" 

•■ Sarcophagus of the cerebellum." 

•• Eh— what— " 

'• He's got it bad,'" came from the opposite bed. 

" But he has got something worse " said Lyon with his 
face still concealed and nodding his head in Wolfe's direc- 
tion. 

" I'd like to know what it is !" exclaimed Dr. Condon, 
in some amazement. 

•• The poor fellow has the secession cerebropathy in its 
worst form." 

•' Hard cases." said the doctor ; brought on by wounds, 
I suppose." 

" Say ' induced ' and I'll agree with you." 

v - We w r ere shot all to pieces and just sewed together 
again. They brought the pieces here in a hand-basket, and 
the surgeon stitched one of that fellow's legs on to me by 
mistake," said the sufferer from cerebropathy. 

Condon began to think he had a couple of madmen to 
deal with. 

" Let me see your wound," he said to Lyon. 

" Look, then." exclaimed his old comrade, uncovering 
his face and smiling at the puzzled Mat. 

" Tom Lyon ! you rascal. I've a mind to break the shell 
of your cerebellum." 

" It's your only chance, Mat, I'm weak, now." 

• ; And this other villian, must be Bill Wolfe," said Con- 
don, turning to the other patient and exposing his features. 

There was a laugh in which Condon joined heartily. 

" Well. Boys' he said. - I'm glad to see you," and he 
shook their hands with fervor. ' k The reunion of three 
gallant hearts after a lapse of years is a joyous event. How 
we are pushed about on the checker board of life — few T of us 
ever getting into the king-row, after all our jumping. But 
it is all for the best, boys, all for the best. What a lucky 



A TALE OF THE REBELLION. 109 

thing that I studied medicine, instead of entering the army, 
as all my inclinations urged me. In deference to a mother's 
tears, I forsook the path of glory to learn the healing art, 
and now I am qualified, to do service to my dearest friends. 
Thank your stars, my wounded Cresars, that I have found 
you. Now I'll have you out of this in less time than — " 

; " Do you mean to murder us, that you talk of getting 
us out of here ?" interrupted Wolfe. " Your patients go 
out in boxes, I suppose." 

" That's what he means,'' chimed in Lyon, " but they 
don't call it murder ; that is a legal term. The medical pro- 
fession has a variety of technical terms to designate differ 
ent modes of snapping the vital thread.'' 

" Their little pellets are more deadly than poisoned 
bullets, and what makes the doctors more terrible than an 
army with banners is the fact that their raw recruits are 
their best shots." 

" Halt, there," cried Condon ; " as a physician, as well 
as a soldier and a gentleman, I can't hear the profession 
slandered. If you don't give it the honor due. I leave you 
to your fate." 

" We can't spare you, Mat, now we have you, but we 
can your medicine. You may safely reckon that we won't 
deplete your stock of drugs." 

" No," added Lyon ; ki though willing to do almost 
anything to oblige an old friend, we are hardly ready 
to be made subjects of for the sake of furthering your 
knowledge and increasing your skill." 

' ; I would like to show you how neatly I could take off 
your leg." 

•• We will take it for granted that you could do it very 
neatly." 

' ; Well " said Condon, philosophically, " I suppose the 
doctors must be satisfied to remain to the end of time the 
unthanked benefactors of the race. Here I have left a 



110 THE NORWICH CADETS ! 

lucrative practice and come on here, at the call of suffering 
humanity, but not a man is willing to submit to an opera- 
tion, and if one has a limb taken off in an artistic manner, 
he looks upon the surgeon as a personal enemy." 

" In mercy to your home patients," we ought to give 
you work enough to keep you here a few r weeks said Wolfe. 

And so the conversation went on. It was renewed 
every day when Condon visited the hospital, and though 
his prescriptions were ridiculed by his two patients, his 
cheerful company proved a cordial to them, and they daily 
grew better. They were soon able to walk about and Lyon 
began to think of rejoining his regiment. 

Condon expressed to him the great desire he felt to 
seize the weapons of warfare and serve through the re- 
mainder of the war : but stated, at the same time, that the 
numerous and urgent letters w r hich he received from his 
deserted patients and the jDathetic letters of his aged mother 
left him no choice in the matter 5 he would be obliged to go 
home. 

He did go, a few days before Lyon left the city, pro- 
testing to the last against the fate which doomed him to 
physical inaction while his whole soul was in arms. 

About this time Wolfe was exchanged and when he 
departed for the Confederacy, Lyon gave him a letter ad- 
dressed to Heloise, and divided with him the amount of 
greenbacks of which he happened at that time to be pos- 
sessed. 

" Aid and comfort to the enemy," said Lyon. 

" I will leave you Cfesar as security," answered "Wolfe, 
and clasping each others' hands for a moment, the two 
friends separated. 

Maj. Lyon found his regiment quartered at Fairfax 
Court House, where he was welcomed by Dr. Safford and 
the rest of his old comrades, among whom was Lieutenant 
Joe, who had reported himself as lit for duty again. 



A TALE OF THE REBELLION. Ill 

There were some weeks of rest and quiet while wait- 
ing for the opening of the spring campaign, and our friends 
managed to pass the time agreeably. 

Dr. Safford explored the archives and discovered many 
ancient documents and interesting records which he read 
and commented on to his companions. ' 

One day he found the time colored papers relating to 
a suit on book-account. It appeared therefrom that in the 
year 1759 " Mr. John Stone, in account with Alexander 
Henderson, Factor for Mr. John Glassford," purchased 
sundry articles, among which were one pound powder, 
one ounce thread, two pounds sugar, one bushel salt. 
one pound brimstone, two dozen metal buttons, one pewter 
dish, two porringers, two quarts rum and one Testament, 
and neglected to pay therefor. 

Mr. Glassford. after waiting a reasonable time, 
petitioned u the worshipful court of Fairfax " and prayed 
judgment for " four pounds, twelve shillings and five 
pence," with costs. Thereupon was issued the following 
summons : 

* ; George the third by the grace of God of great 
Britain, France and Ireland, King, Defender of the Faith, 
etc., to the sheriff of Fairfax, Greeting : we command you 
that you summon John Stone to appear before our Justice 
of our said county court at the court-house the third Tues 
day in next month to answer the petition of John Glass- 
ford, . and have then and there this writ. Witness, Peter 
Wagner, clerk of our said court, the 30th day of April, in 
the 3d year of our Reign 1763. P. Wagner." 

This was written as we have given it, on coarse paper, 
but in a fair round hand, as plain as print, and decidedly 
superior to the Spencerian hand, if legibility is the chief 
thing to be desired in writing. 

Judgment was confessed by John Stone for the amount 
claimed. 



112 



THE NORWICH CADETS: 



" This case was brought before this worshipful court 
one hundred years ago," said Dr Safford. turning his mental 
eye backward over the course of time. 

" And the sugar and the salt and the rum were used up 
long ago." said Hank. 

" Yes, but the pewter dish may yet survive to plague us 
in the developed form of rebel bullets." remarked Lieut. 
Joe. 

" History repeats itself, they say," continued the doctor, 
" and it appears to me that there is now a parallel case be- 
fore this worshipful court. The descendants of this John 
Stone, defendant, stand charged on the books of Uncle 
Sam with having received from him sundry goods, benefits 
and blessings, for which they refuse to pay. Uncle Sam 
has petitioned to the supreme court of the country, in which 
every man sits as one of the Justices, and a summons has 
been issued and placed in the hands of Sheriff Grant to be 
served." 

•• And we are a part of the posse comitatus to help him 
serve it," said Lyon. 

" I hope, said Merritt, " that the defendants will con- 
fess judgement with costs." 

" They seem inclined to contest the case, said the major. 
,k and we shall be obliged to employ the argumentum vaculi- 
num in order to gain our cause." 

" Yes, we will back them down, and now this court will 
take a recess and the possy come-at-us can do as it pleases," 
and private "Wait, justice, rose from his seat and walked out 
with the dignity of a hundred years ago. 



A TALE OF THE REBELLION. 113 



CHAPTER XII. 

the battle of the wilderness charge of the old brigade 

grant's report behind the log breastwork the fall 

of lyon — Cesar's report. 

LYSSES S. GRANT was made Lieut, 
enant General, March 2d, 1864, and placed in 
command of all the armies of the United States- 
The army of the Potomac, numbering now some 
thing over 100,000 men, was divided into three 
corps, commanded respectively by Gens. Han- 
cock, Warren and Segdwick — all being under 
the command of Gen. Meade. It crossed the 
Rapidan, May 4th, and moved into "The Wildnerness." On 
Thursday, May 5th, the Vermont Brigade, which had 
crossed the river at Germania Ford the day before, met the 
rebel advance a short distance from the crossings. They 
met in the dense woods at close quarters and the battle of 
the Wilderness began. 

The rebels had the advantage of position and rained 
their bullets in showers on the Old Brigade, which, however, 
stood firm. It held the key of the position of the whole 
array, and though its ranks were being terribly thinned, no 
man thought of retreating. The Vermonters repulsed every 
attempt to dislodge them, but their valor cost them 1,000 




114 THE NORWICH CADETS : 

brave officers and men. That night they slept upon the 
battle field, with the dead bodies of their comrades around 
them, and the groans of the wounded and dying filling the 
aii\ 

The next morning the Brigade advanced again to the 
attack, and fought with the same stern courage as on the 
day before, and still on the morning of the 7th they were 
ready for the conflict, but a slight skirmish demonstrated 
the fact that the enemy had retired froin their front, and 
they contented themselves with capturing a large number 
of muskets which the enemy had collected. 

The Brigade marched all night of May 7th, and the 
next day was sent again into the thickest of the fight. The 
( Jth was spent in skmnishing and in fortifying a position 
under fire. 

On the 10th, three regiments of the Brigade, under the 
command of our hero, now promoted to the rank of Colonel, 
formed part of a column ordered to charge the enemy's 
works. The Yermonters were the rear line of the charging 
column. The front lines met with partial success, gaining 
the works and capturing some prisoners, but were finally 
driven back by the enemy. 

The rear line then advanced under a galling fire. 

w ' The Old Brigade is wanted now !" cried Lyon to his 
men. " Forward ! and take those works and hold them." 

" Take your baggage with you ; w r e go to stay," said 
Lieutenant Joe to his company. 

" My trunk is checked," put in Hank, as a rousing 
cheer rang out from the lines. 

Forward they plunged with a resistless energy. Men 
fell, but the column moved onward. Nothing but death 
could stop them. Over the works they sprang, driving out 
the enemy at the point of the bayonet. They planted their 
tattered colors there and greeted them with hearty cheers. 

But they were not allowed to hold undisputed pos- 



A TALE OF THE REBELLION. 115 

session of the works. The enemy made desperate attempts 
to retake them, but again and again were beaten off by the 
obstinate defenders who were determined to hold and 
occupy what they had won, if it were only with their dead 
bodies. 

" We've moved in here with our goods and shan't move 
out till next April, unless we've a mind to," remarked private 
Wait to the hindmost of the retreating rebels, who had 
charged the ranks in vain. 

" If we like the premises and pay our rent, there's no 
law to compel us. We're a quiet family, too, if you let us 
alone." 

The position, however, was judged untenable by the 
general in command of the movement, and orders were 
sent to the Vermonters to withdraw from the ranks and fall 
back. 

" Ridiculous !" muttered private Wait, as he heard the 
order, but speaking to a soldier on his right, who happened 
to be his uncle, Joseph Dickinson. 

" By golly, I think so," returned the uncle. 

"I like the place, uncle Joseph, and I am going to stay 
here. If you go, you can tell my ma'am and Catherine, 
where you left me." 

" Can't we hold it, Colonel ?" inquired Lieut. Safford. 

" We are doing it and we can," answered Lyon. 

" Then don't order us back." 

" I won't if I can help it." 

"Tell the General," he said to the waiting aid, "that 
we can hold the works for six months, if supplied with 
rations and ammunition." 

Again the rebs swept up to regain their lost works, 
and again a withering lire of musketry, from men who 
wasted few bullets, drove them back in disorder. 

But soon thereafter, the Vermonters, in obedience to a 
positive order from the General, were obliged to retire 



116 THE NORWICH CADETS! 

from the ground they had so bravely won and obstinately 
held on to. 

The next morning, Gen. Grant sent to the War Depart- 
ment the following dispatch : 

" Headquarters in the Field,) 
May 11th, 1864—8 a. m. j 

We have now ended the sixth day of very heavy fight- 
ing. The result, to this time, is much in our favor. 

Our losses have been heavy as well as of the enemy. 
I think the loss of the enemy must be greater. 

We have taken over 5,000 prisoners by battle, whilst he 
has taken from us but few, except stragglers. 

I propose to fight it out on tliis line, if it takes all 
summer. 

U. S. GKANT, Lt. Gen. commanding 
the Armies of the U. S." 

On the 11th day of May, the Brigade was constantly 
under fire, and on the 12 th it was ordered to support Han- 
cock, and was engaged in one of the hardest fights which it 
had yet experienced. The Brigade was under the command 
of Gen. Lewis A. Grant. A breastwork of logs and rails 
only separated it from the enemy. 

The combatants fired into each other's faces, and fought 
with clubbed muskets and even pieces of fence rails, in a 
hand-to-hand struggle as they alternately made or repelled 
assaults. 

Crouching down behind the breastworks, they would 
load, and then rising quickly, discharge their muskets at the 
enemy and fall 'down again as quickly to the ground. 

Hank, who was fighting on his own hook, rose to fire 
just as a squad of the enemy rose for the same purpose. 
Ducking suddenly as he saw the position, their bullets went 
over his head. 

"You're immensely careless," he exclaimed reproach- 
fully, as he quickly rose again and sent his bullet through 
the shoulder of a dropping rebel. 



A TALE OF THE EEBELLION. 117 

A yell of pain attested the effect of his shot. 

A reinforcement of the enemy came up now, and, with 
frightful yells, they mounted the breastwork, some of them 
even jumping down on to our side, in the attempt to dis- 
lodge the Old Brigade. 

" Drive them back !" cried Lyon, as he himself set an 
example to his men. 

Screams, shouts and groans made an indescribable 
tumult as North met South in a trial of physical strength. 

Those whose pieces were loaded fired them in the faces 
of the assailants and then turned them end for end, dealing 
their blows right and left. Swords and bayonets met as 
officers and men mingled in an indiscriminate combat. 
Clubs were wielded with the dexterity of those whose 
favorite weapon is a stick of blackthorn. 

Lieut. Joe, seizing a long rail in his hands, swung it 
around with such tremendous force that he swept a rank of 
rebels from the breastwork, like so many chickens from a 
hen-roost. 

" That's Uncle Abe's weapon " said Hank ; " swinging 
it once more, and the battle is over." 

" If your rail had been a little longer, Lieutenant," said 
Lyon, "you would have knocked the brains out of the 
whole Confederacy." 

Those of the enemy who had got over the breastwork 
were made prisoners. Those on the works jumped back to 
their own side. 

" After them !" shouted Lyon, springing upon the 
breastwork, followed by his men. 

" It's no more than polite to return their call," said 
Hank, as he leaped down among his late guests. 

The rebels by scores threw down their arms and sur- 
rendered themselves. 

With their prisoners, the Vermonters retreated to their 
own side of the log fence just in time to escape from, and 



118 THE NORWICH CADETS 

be ready to meet, another flood of Southern chivalry, which 
was dashed up against the works they defended. 

Occasionally a white flag was shown on the other side, 
and as our fire slackened the confederates swarmed over 
and voluntarily gave themselves up. 

But others were led up to take their places, and the 
contest was continued. Thus for eight hours the Brigade 
was engaged, and not without loss, though it inflicted 
greater loss on the enemy. 

Lyon's coat was perforated by balls, but he received no 
wound. Hank had the heel shot off his boot as he stood on 
the breastwork. Lieut. Saftord was carried to the rear, 
wounded. 

Late in the day, Col. Lyon thought he saw an op- 
portunity, by a sudden charge, in force, of capturing a large 
number of the enemy. The word was accordingly passed 
along, weapons were prepared and at a given signal the 
Vermonters poured once more over the breastwork like a 
spring-freshet over, the dam across a mountain stream. The 
movement was highly successful at first. The enemy 
yielded before the impetuous assault, large numbers were 
captured and hurried to the Union side of the fence ; but 
our friends were not to escape with impunity. 

Two rebel regiments came to the rescue of their friends 
and charged our troops in turn, forcing them back in spite 
of their best efforts It was the fiercest encounter of the 
day. 

Lyon gave the order to retire, but fought himself in the 
the rear of his retreating command to enable it to do so in 
good order. The enemy pressed closer and at length broke 
our line. There was a confused struggle for a moment — a 
discharge of small arms at close quarters, and Lyon throw- 
ing up his hands wildly, cried out — 
"I have got it!" 
He fell senseless to the ground. There was a rush of 



A TALE OF THE REBELLION. 119 

the enemy over his motionless body, and his men were 
driven over the breakworks. There they halted and held their 
own, but they were not able to regain the ground they had 
left nor recover the body of their commander. 

Till after dark the Brigade defended the position, but 
there were many sad hearts at the loss of Lyon. In the 
evening the men were marched around, feeling their way 
through the dense woods to the extreme right, where they 
took position for the night. 

Dr. Safford, as soon as he found time, sought out 
private Wait to inquire after the colonel. 

" You think he was killed, do you Hank V 

"Yes, I have no doubt of it," replied Hank with a 
tremor in his voice. " I stood close beside him ; a pistol 
bullet from a rebel captain, who won't ever shoot another 
Yankee, struck him in the breast and he fell as I've seen 
many a dead man fall." 

" Didn't move or speak again ?" 

" No ; but of course I didn't stay there long ; we were 
driven back in a hurry, you know." 

" He is probably dead," said the doctor, with a sigh. 
" The only wonder is that he was not killed long ago. So 
reckless of danger has he been." 

For the next three days the Brigade was not engaged. 

Caesar's grief was inconsolable when he heard of Col. 
Lyon's death. He felt that his mission was accomplished, 
and he would gladly have returned to his mistress if he had 
known of any safe way of doing so. Under the exciting 
circumstances, he determined to write, trusting to chance 
to forward his communication. After spending the most of 
one day on his epistle, he submitted it to Hank to whom 
he had attached himself after the loss of his master. It was 
written phonetically, or as Hank said, niggeretically as fol- 
lows : 

" Mi deer missis — ize bery sory to tel yer de bad nuze 



120 THE NORWICH cadets: 

specs yer wanter heer do massa wilyum dura got kotched bi 
de yankis i found him mos ded an nust him till he conwales- 
sentid an went bac to our side to kil hisself ober agin mass 
liun was kild 2 free times fitiall de time neber seed de likes 
an now heze ded mis heloeze ize fraid i neber get outer dis 
don't kotch me in anoder scrap whar bullets is mity site mor 
plenty dan hokakes hopin yer wel ize mos superrlewously 
yer distingwisht and obejunt suiwant. Seezur." 

Strange as it may seem, this letter, which Hank under- 
took to deliver in order to satisfy the writer and which he 
fastened to a tree, was afterwards found by Col. Wolfe and 
forwarded to its destination. 



A TALE OF THE REBELLION. 121 



CHAPTER XIII. 

FROM THE WILDERNESS TO COLD HARBOR — IN THE SHENANDOAH 

VALLEY RETURN TO PETERSBURG THE CAMPAIGN OF 18G5 

THE OLD BRIGADE MAKES A BEGINNING OF THE END 

CAPTURE OF PETERSBURG AND RICHMOND LEE's RETREAT 

COL. WOLFE A PRISONER THE LAST CHARGE OF THE CON- 
FEDERACY LEE'S SURRENDER THE UNION SAVED. 

N the 16th operations were renewed by a recon- 
noisance in the direction of Spotsylvania Court 
House, a part' of the Brigade gallantly driving 
the enemy's skirmishers to their main line of 
works. On the 18th the Vermonters with the 
rest of the 6th corps and the 2d corps charged 
under heavy artillery fire and held the front line 
until ordered to retire. 
From Spottsylvania the Brigade marched on the night 
of the 21st to Guinea's Station, thence to the North Anna 
River, which they crossed and re-crossed, skirmishing with the 
enemy and tearing up the railroad. On the 27th it crossed 
the Pamunkey River. On the 29th it turned toward Rich- 
mond, being almost every day engaged either in marching 
or fighting, and on the first of June the gallant remnant of 
the old Brigade arrived at Cold Harbor, its total losses 
during this bloody month of May, from the Rapidan to Cold 
Harbor, footing up nearly 2,000 men. 




122 THE NORWICH CADETS: 

But neither their toils nor their dangers were over. As 
soon as they arrived they were thrown into battle on the 
extreme left, towards the Chickahominy, and for twelve 
days they were under an incessant fire of musketry and 
artillery. On the 3d of June they were posted in the edge 
ef the woods, with no protection but the trees, and kept up 
a sort of Indian warfare for a while. 

With the Yermonters here was Col. E wart's regiment 
and that of Maj. Staples. These two officers, thus brought 
together, recognized each other and renewed their former 
acquaintance. Merritt (now Major) was in command of his 
regiment, and he with Dr. Safford and private Wait made 
all of our old friends still left in arms. 

As the muskets cracked and men fell here and there, 
or the bark flew from the trees, without any material ad- 
vantage being gained by either side, E warts began to chafe 
at the desultory fighting, and expressed his preference for 
sharper and closer work. 

" Go out Colonel, alone, like Goliah " said Staples and 
dare the rebel host to battle, as you did once on a time 
the Dartmouth boys." 

" I should rather go out to meet their Goliah," returned 
the Colonel ; " I think I should like that better than biding 
here behind a tree." 

" I pity the giant's coat, if you get hold of him." 

" We will soon strip the coat from the whole Con- 
federacy, and show the world what a skeleton it is." 

In another quarter Hank was alternately firing and 
talking with the utmost rapidity, and if his words failed to 
hit the mark his bullets were better aimed. 

" I never saw such an unreasonable set as those rebels, 
did you, Uncle Joseph V s inquired Hank of his relative, who 
stood behind the nearest tree. 

" No, nephew, I didn't — least-ways I disremember -to." 

" No argument but lead is heavy enough to convince 



A TALE OF THE REBELLION. 123 

them," continued Hank, discharging his piece with evident 

effect. 

" Now, I've been nearly three years," he said, loading- 
as lie spoke, " trying to persuade these fellows to support 
bur good government. I've stopped some of them from 
opposing it — " 

Here he fired again with effect, by way of parenthesis, 
and immediately proceeded to reload. 

" But those that are left are just as unreasonable as 
ever. They act like a country district school meeting, which 
always goes to work to defeat what it pretends to want." 
Here he fired again. 

u They say they want a good government, and here 
they are trying to tear down the best government that ever 
existed." 

" Exactly," assented Uncle Joseph. 
"I don't know of any other way of doing it except 
this"— and here he fired twice in succession without speak- 
ing. This method of argument was certainly forcible. It 
made some impression, and was the only one likely to be 
appreciated by his opponents. 

The Brigade was finally withdrawn from this position 
and sent to another part of the field. 

About midnight on the night of the 12th, the Brigade 
started on the march for Petersburg by the way of Charles 
City Court House, and arrived there on the afternoon of the 
17th. 

It is not our purpose to detail minutely the operations 
of the Army of the Potomac, or even all those in which the 
Brigade was specially engaged. We shall note only the 
more remarkable and memorable events, and those in which 
our characters were concerned. 

The Brigade was actively employed in the neighbor- 
hood of Petersburg till the 9th of July, when it embarked at 
City point for Washington, and during the remainder of 



124 THE NORWICH CADETS! 

the summer and fall served against the rebel marauders and 
other forces scattered through northern Virginia. To it be- 
longed the honor of victoriously beginning " the series of 
splendid movements and successive battles which drove the 
rebel forces from the Valley of Shenandoah." 

The times of enlistment of most of the regiments ex- 
pired in July, but many men re-enlisted and these with new 
recruits kept up the organizations. 

Meanwhile, Grant kept hammering away persistently 
at Petersburg, and striking at Lee's army wherever and 
whenever he could hit it, while Sheridan was running 
amuck through the Valley, hitting at every organized form 
of rebellion, and devastating the country so that it might 
not again attract the enemy into it. 

The campaign of 1864 ended the latter part of October 
with the battle of Boyden Plank Eoad, brought on by a 
general advance of Grant's forces, and with Sheridan's bril- 
liant snatching of victory from defeat after his twenty mile 
ride from Winchester. The Old Brigade was with him and 
gained new laurels in that double battle. 

The winter passed away without any movement of im- 
portance in Virginia. Grant was content to hold Lee's army 
in his neighborhood and prevent it from operating else- 
where. There were a few rebel raids in northern Virginia 
but they were of little consequence and had no appreciable 
effect upon the result of the war. The Old Brigade re- 
turned to the army in front of Petersburg about the middle 
of December and went into winter quarters. 

Gen. Sheridan, acting under the command of Gen. 
Grant, opened the campaign of 1865 by a cavalry raid 
aimed at Lynchburg. He left Winchester Feb. 27th with 
10,000 mounted men. Hurling himself against the rebel 
Gen. Early, intrenched at Waynesboro, he gained a 
complete victory, leaving little of Early's force except 
Early himself. The First Regiment Vermont Cavalry 



A TALE OP THE REBELLION. 125 

formed a part of Sheridan's force and participated in tha 
dangers and glories of the expedition. 

Grant issued his order for a general advance of his left, 
the latter part of March, and on the 29th, the 5th and 2d 
corps moved out southwesterly to co-operate with Sheridan, 
who, coming down the valley, had now arrived at the grand 
scene of action where the final struggle of the Rebellion 
was to be made. 

The main body of the army still remained in the 
trenches before Petersburg to bombard or assault the town 
and ready to enter it upon its evacuation by the enemy, 
while Gen. Weifezel threatened Richmond with a consider- 
able force from the north of the James. 

On Saturday, April 1st, Lee's right wing was de- 
molished, and as darkness fell, the guns before Petersburg 
opened from right to left, and with tongues of fire thundered 
forth the doom of the beseiged city. 

At daybreak on Sunday morning an assault was 
ordered. The Vermont Brigade, with the Sixth Corps un- 
der Wright, charged and drove everything before them up 
to the Boyden road. Wheeling to the left, toward Hatcher's 
Run, they swept down the rear of the rebel intrenchments, 
capturing many guns and several thousand prisoners. 

The honor of being the first to break the enemy's line 
is claimed by the Vermont Brigade. The first colors planted 
on the works belonged to the Brigade, and the first man to 
mount the works was Capt. Gould, of the Fifth regiment. 

Gen. L. A. Grant was wounded, and the command 
of the Brigade devolved on Lieut.-Colonel Tracy of the 
Second regiment. 

The enemy broke and fled in every direction. The 
Brigade lost all organization in the ardor of pursuit. 
Officers and men vied with each other in a four mile race 
after the fugitive rebels. 

"My kingdom for a horse !" cried Hank, as he panted 



126 THfi UOfcWlCH CARETS! 

along. " I never before fully appreciated the convenience 
of long legs and a spare body. These fellows run like 
hounds." 

And you like a turtle," said Maj. Merritt, as he dashed 
past. 

Gen. Meade speaks of this attack of the Sixth Corps, 
as " the decisive movement of the canrpaign." 

President Davis, in Richmond, was at church that 
morning when the dispatch from Gen. Lee was handed to 
him : 

" My lines are broken in three places. Richmond must 
be evacuated this evening." 

Petersburg was evacuated that afternoon and Richmond 
the next morning. 

Sunday evening the Brigade established its head- 
quarters at the Turnbull House, where Gen. Lee had had 
his headquarters during the winter. 

Early the next morning the Old Brigade, with the Sixth 
Corps, started in rapid pursuit of the rebel army, which 
was now intent only on getting away. 

Gen. Weitzel at 6 A. M., of the same day, entered the 
burning city of Richmond, which had been set on fire by 
the retreating rebels, and the American flag soon floated 
once more in the breeze above the Capitol of Virginia, and 
was greeted with enthusiastic cheers by the excited 
multitude below. 

Petersburg was occupied the same day by our troops, 
who marched proudly and unopposed into the city they had 
struggled for so long. 

On the afternoon of the 6th the sixth corps came up 
with the enemy at Sailor's Creek and an engagement 
ensued. A portion of Sheridan's cavalry, by a bold charge, cut 
off the rebel Gen. Ewell's corps from the rest of Lee's army 
and inclosed it between them and the advancing 6th corps. 
The trapped Confederates fought with the courage of des- 



A TALE OF THE REBELLION. 127 

peration, but they fought without a chance of victory or 
escape. 

Gol. Wolfe with his regiment found himself between the 
jaws of the Union vise and dashed into the fight with all 
the recklessness of his nature. 

" Death, but not surrender ! Georgians, follow me !" 
he cried, and rushed forward to meet the stern charge of 
our Sixth Corps. 

But the Confederates were discouraged by the hopeless 
nature of their situation, and threw down their arms and 
surrendered. Ewell himself, with four other generals, were 
among the 6,000 prisoners taken this day. Col. Wolfe was 
captured, foaming with rage at what he called the cowardice 
of his men. He was courteously received by Major Merritt, 
and soon meeting with several former Mends, among whom 
were Staples and Ewarts, and finding Caesar overjoyed to 
see him again alive and unhurt, he seemed to grow recon- 
ciled to his fate and to that of the Confederacy. 

'•Ize mighty glad to see you Massa William " said the 
faithful black with tears in his eyes. " I neber let you 
leabe me agin. Ize yer nigga and does't want no freedom. 
Massa Linkum's mancerpation no use to Ceesar." 

On the night of April 5th, many prominent rebel 
officers met around a bivouac fire to discuss the situation, 
and unanimously agreed that a capitulation was inevitable. 
Lee was not present, but his opinion must have coincided 
with theirs, for during the 7th and 8th, though making 
every effort to escape the toils of his foe, he was engaged in 
a correspondence with Grant looking towards a surrender 
of his army. 

On the morning of Sunday the 9th, however, the rebel 
chief thought he saw one remaining chance and determined 
to improve it. Sheridan had intercepted his flight and 
presuming that his way was blocked by cavalry alone, he 
ordered a charge of infantry. It was made and it proved 



128 THE NORWICH CADETS: 

the last charge of that gallant army, which had fought, with 
a courage seldom surpassed, from the time of the first Bull 
Run till then, when a mere wreck of its former self, it was 
surrounded by foes in overwhelming numbers. 

Sheridan's dismounted troopers retired slowly before 
their advance for a while, but suddenly " the horsemen 
moved swiftly to the right and dismounted, revealing lines of 
solid infantry in battle array, before whose wall of gleam- 
ing bayonets the astonished enemy recoiled in blank 
despair." Before our cavalry had time to charge them the 
Confederates waved a white flag and hostilities were at 
once suspended. 

That day, Lee surrendered his army of about 27,000, 
where its flight had been stopped, about nineteen miles 
from Lynchburg. For this purpose, Grant and Lee met at 
the house of Mr.- W. McLean, near Appomattox Court 
House, and in a brief interview settled the terms of sur- 
render. 

The rebellion w r as virtually ended, though not for some 
weeks after did Johnston surrender to Sherman, and the 
other rebel armies disband or surrender. As the glad 
tidings spread with the speed of lightning over the loyal 
North, rejoicings were every w r here indulged in that the 
blood and treasure had not been spent in vain, but 
had purchased this glorious result — the Union saved and 
Liberty preserved ! 



A TALE OF THE REBELLION. 129 



CHAPTER XI V . 

COL. WOLFE PAROLED AND WITH CESAR SETS OUT FOR HOME 

SPIRITUAL RECONSTRUCTION A HAPPY MEETING AND SURPRISE 

CAESAR SEES A GHOST AN EXPLANATION COL. LYON RE- 
JOINS THE BRIGADE HOMEWARD MARCH AND MUSTER OUT 

UNION BY MARRIAGE LAW FIRM OF LYON AND WOLFE. 

H E Vermont Brigade was at Farmville, guard- 
ing supplies, at the time of Lee's surrender. 
From there they marched to Burkesyille 
Junction where they remained two weeks, and 
here Col. Wolfe, having been paroled, took 
leave of the Yermonters and, taking Caesar with 
him, set out for home, or rather towards the 
place where he expected to find his sister. 

A long time previous to Lee's surrender he 
had foreseen that Richmond was not likely to continue a 
desirable place of residence, and probably not a safe one, 
and he had cordially seconded his sister's plan to take up 
her abode with an aunt living in a retired part of the state, 
remote from railroads and routes likely to be pursued by 
hostile parties. Here Heloise had quietly remained during 
the past year, and all the more contentedly because her 
aunt, a widow ladxy, was of her way of thinking in regard to 
Q 




130 THE NORWICH CADETS: 

the merits of secession. Twice her brother had visited her. 
and she was never a very long time without hearing from 
him. 

Procuring a couple of horses, the Colonel and Caesar 
started on their journey, and as they passed by the evidences 
that the Confederacy was a thing of the past, and the cause 
a " lost cause " indeed, Wolfe reviewed in his mind the his- 
tory of the last four years, and found reason to regret the part 
which he, in company with others, had taken in the effort 
to dismember the American republic. His secession fever 
was rapidly abating, and as his eyes met here and there the 
old flag of the Union, floating like sections of sunset cloud 
in the air, his heart swelled with an irrepressible feeling of 
pride that it was the flag of his country, and he experienced 
a sense of joy that his arm was free once more to battle be- 
neath its folds and for its glory. In spirit he was " recon- 
structed." 

The two proceeded at good pace for most of the time, 
for they had a long ride before them ; but occasionally they 
slackened their speed, and master and servant (in reality 
free and equal fellow-citizens as Wolfe could not help re- 
membering) fell into conversation to relieve the monotony 
of the way. 

•• Well, Ccesar, how do you like the Yankees I You 
ought to know something about them by this time." 

" Berry well, massa, if you do — jes' as you say." 

i; Were they kind to you :" 

" Treated me like a brodder." 

k - Was Col. Lyon a good master V 

" Next to you, massa William. He neber let no harm 
come to Cfesar till he got killed." 

" He is dead, then, is he ?" said Wolfe with a strange 
expression of face, which his sable attendant could not read. 

" Yis, massa ; shot right froo de heart, dey said. I 
werren't dere." 



A~TALE OP THE REBELLION. 131 

" No, I'll warrant you. No danger of you ever being 
shot, CeBsar." 

" Hope's not, massa." 

They rode on again in silence, Wolfe evidently being 
busy with his own thoughts, and Caesar knowing better 
than to speak when not spoken to. 

At noon they stopped at a little tavern and refreshed 
themselves and horses, after which they pushed on again. 
At nightfall they had not reached their destination, but 
Wolfe was familiar with the road and he kept on. 

About nine o'clock in the evening they saw before them 
the glimmering lights of a mansion house, situated in a re- 
tired locality several miles distant from any habitation. 
Urging their tired steeds to a slight increase of speed, they 
soon rode up to and dismounted at the door. 

A swarm of negroes, lately enfranchised, but ignorant 
of the fact, quickly surrounded them and took their horses, 
while they gave the Colonel, as soon as they recognized 
him, an affectionate welcome. 

A medley of voices and expressions greeted his ear : 

M Berry glad, sah — " 

• ; Se, yer all alibe again, sah — " 

" Hopes yer well massa Colonel — " 

" Young missus be delighted — " . 

•*Dis way, massa — " 

" I tells de missis.'' 

But there was no need of any announcement. The 
uproar outside brought the inmates of the mansion out on 
the veranda and Wolfe was soon shaking hands with his 
aunt, his sister, and a pale gentleman in civilian's dress. 

" How are you Tom — getting stronger !" he said to the 
latter. 

" Yes, I am ; but what brings you here at this time V 
replied the gentleman. 



132 THE NORWICH CADETS: 

" I'll tell you soon, but come in now ; I have a surprise 
in store." 

" Here, Caesar, I want you," he called, and that person 
soon apjDeared and followed his master into the house. 

As the door closed and Caesar stood cap in hand wait- 
ing for orders, the strange gentleman turned and looked 
earnestly at him. 

Caesar returned the look with interest. His eyes 
seemed starting from his head, while his teeth chattered 
audibly. 

The gentleman smiled and advanced towards him say- 
ing— 

" How are you, Caesar T 

As Caesar saw him approaching, he dashed for the door 
screaming — 

" Lemme out ! lemme out !" 

But his master stood with his back to the door laugh- 
ing at the poor fellow's fright. 

' ; Do you think me a ghost, Caesar f" inquired the ob- 
ject of his terror. 

" I knows you's dead, massa Lyon, dey all said so." 

While the} r enjoyed a laugh at this reply, Caesar re- 
gained his self-possession, and was finally convinced of his 
mistake. — 

" I am happy to inform you that I am still alive and 
likely soon to be well," said Col. Lyon, for it was indeed he. 

And now some explanation is due the reader as well as 
Caesar. 

In the fight on the rebel side of the log-breastwork in 
the Wilderness, Hank Wait supposed and reported that 
Lyon fell dead, or at least mortally w r ounded. But such 
was not the fact. The next morning, Col. Wolfe, who was 
always on the lookout for his Mend, and w T ho never passed 
a dead or wounded Federal officer without a searching look, 
found Lyon on the field desperately wounded and had him 



A TALE OF THE BEBELLION. 133 

carefully conveyed to a place of safety. Knowing that if 
his friend was consigned to the mercy of the Confederacy 
and sent to Andersonville, or any other prison pen, he would 
surely die, and that nothing but the most tender care and 
nursing could save his life, he determined to exercise him- 
self a little soverign authority in the behalf of friendship. 
Accordingly, as soon as Lyon was able to stand the journey, 
he dispatched him with two faithful servants to the quiet 
residence of his aunt, feeling confident that kind lady and 
good Union woman and his sister Heloise would do 
their utmost for the wounded officer. 

The event proved that he was not mistaken. Our 
hero, who was in a very critical situation for several months, 
was cared for with the greatest solicitude, and nothing 
that could minister to his comfort or contribute to his re- 
covery was lacking. After he began to gain he was pro- 
vided with a suit of plain clothes, his Federal uniform being 
put out of sight, and the servants and others were given to 
understand that he was a relative of the family from another 
southern State, who had come there for the improvement of 
his health. 

His convalescence was slow, but could not fail to be 
pleasant, for beside the pleasure of feeling that his former 
strength was gradually returning, his days were spent in 
the society of her who, by her tireless devotion, had done so 
much to bring him back to life. 

As the pleasant days of spring arrived to clothe the 
earth with verdure, and he. was able to walk and ride with 
her, he felt a certain degree of that insanity which led Marc 
Antony to sell his glory for the smiles of woman. Never- 
theless, he frequently yearned to return to the field of con- 
flict, even before his health was sufficiently restored to 
render him fit to endure the hardships of active service. 
But his honor was pledged to Wolfe that he would not at- 
tempt to escape, and he therefore waited till his friend 



1 34 THE NORWICH^CADETS \ 

should release ,him from his promise, or he should be ex- 
changed. 

After Caesar had satisfied himself of the reality of 
Lyon's existence in the flesh, and had expressed his great 
joy thereat, he was allowed to retire, and then Lyon in- 
quired of his friend the cause of his unexpected visit. 

" I come to tell you. Tom, that you are no longer my 
prisoner, but are at liberty to take up your line of march in 
whatever direction you please." — 

" Thank you ; but why — " 

" The Confederacy is dead ! Lee has surrendered ! 
Richmond is taken ! the war is ended ! 

" Oh ! what happy news !" said Heloise, while tears 
glistened in her eyes." 

" Thank God !" exclaimed the old lady w that this cruel 
and wicked strife is over." 

Lyon was at first too much surprised to speak, and 
when he found ability to speak, he hesitated to express the 
joy and triumph which he felt, out of regard to the possible 
feelings of his friend. Wolfe saw this and said : 

" You may indulge yourself in three cheers if you like : 
I don't feel so badly as you doubtless think." 

" I am certainly pleased " said Lyon : " I am surprised 
too, at the sudden c jmpleteness of the Union triumph, 
though the end is what I have always expect e 1." 

" Your chief regret is that you were not in at the death. 
You meant to charge the ' last ditch ' in which the hunted 
Confederacy should ensconce itself. I know the naughti- 
ness of your heart, Tom." 

" Whatever my wishes, I was not there," replied Lyon, 
" but I suppose Vermont was represented." 

" Yes, I left your Vermont heroes this morning at 
Burkesville Junction." 

" And there I must join them." 

In spite of the urgent requests to remain, Lyon 
determined to set out the next day. Before he retired that 
night, however, he won the consent of Heloise that he might 
soon return to claim her as his own. 

Next morning, after an affectionate farewell to all, he 
started, being accompanied by Caesar, who was sent to bring 
back the horses. 

Arriving unheralded at the camp of the Vermont 



A TALE OF THE REBELLION. 135 

Brigade, his old companions in arms exhibited almost as 
much surprise and alarm as Cassar had done. Their first 
excitement over, however, they gave him as warm a welcome 
as he had reason to expect. 

" It's a waste of time and tears to mourn for you, 
Colonel," said Hank. " We could have made a great saving 
if we had only known that bullets cannot hurt you." 

* ; He must live to be President. It is written," said Dr. 
Safford solemnly. 

On the 23d of April, the Brigade left the Junction and 
marched to Danville, 105 miles, in a few hours more than 
four days. From Danville they moved by railroad to Man- 
chester. May 18th, and on the 24th marched for Washing- 
ton, D. C. They went into camp near Munson's Hill, Va., 
and remained there until mustered out of service. 

On the 7th of June, the Vermont Brigade was reviewed 
by Gov. Smith at Bailey's Cross Roads, Va., and on the 8th 
the Brigade with the rest of the Sixth Corps was reviewed 
by the President at Washington. On the 24th of June, 
Brevet- Major General L. A. Grant issued his final address 
to the brigade he had so long commanded, and on the 28th 
of June 1865, the Vermont Brigade, which had won for 
itself such lasting honor, ceased to exist as an organization. 
Its members returned to the various pursuits of private 
and civil life. Like streams which flow into and combine 
with the waters of the ocean, the returning volunteers 
flowed back to and mingled with their fellow-citizens of the 
republic, forming a homogeneous whole. 

Major Merritt won fame and fortune by his musical 
talents. Capt. Nason invented a wonderful churn, and was 
successful in persuading the farmers to buy it. Maj. 
Staples studied law and is now a rising man in New Hamp- 
shire. Ewarts has been governor of one of the western 
states. Condon is in the patent medicine business, and if 
his advertisements are to be believed, it is the utmost folly 
for any one to die of ».ny manner of disease whatever. Dr. 
Safford returned to the practice of his profession in a quiet 
town of Windham County, and still drives his gig along the 
shady mountain roads in summer, and his cutter over and 
through the snow drifts in winter, alleviating the distresses 
of his fellow creatures. By way of amusement he cultivates 
flowers in their season and indulges his literary taste with- 



136 THE NORWICH CADETS; 

out regard to the time of the year. His poem, " The Pro 
cesssion of the Flowers, " and some of his war-songs ar< 
productions of decided merit ; but though, like all poets 
ki fond of his own sweet songs," he is fain to confess tha 
Vermont has as yefc produced no poet superior to Homer 
Private Hank Wait is tilling the paternal acres by proxy 
and has more than regained the flesh he lost in his country'! 
service. 

Lieut. Joe Safford, twice wounded in battle, and en 
feebled by hardship and exposure, returned home with i 
shattered constitution, and was not able to check the slov 
but determined advance of the enemy, death. Not as h< 
would have chosen to die, in the excitement of battle, bu 
quietly, in the midst of mourning friends, bis spirit begai 
its march eternal. His body rests in the little graveyard a 
Greeenbush, in the shadow 7 of the beautiful mountain, whicl 
his feet in boyhood often climbed. 

In the autumn of 1865, Col. Lyon went down to Vir 
ginia in the interests of union, but without any orders fron 
government, and when he returned to Vermont he brough' 
Heloise with him as his wife. Col. Wolfe continued at th( 
South for a year or two, but finally yielded to the solicita 
tions of his friend and his sister and came North to resid( 
permanently. The Norwich Cadets entered into partner 
ship in one of our most beautiful and thriving villages 
About the door of their office Caesar is generally to be ob 
served in sunny weather. Above the door a sign is visible 
inscribed " Lyon and Wolfe." The initial letters of thes( 
three words sufficiently declare the business done within 
and the line beneath the names is hardly necessary, so wel 
are our heroes known. Eight years and eight days have 
now passed since Lee's surrender, and the name of Col 
Lyon is a prominent one in his native State. There is stil 
time, and the prospect is fair that the prophecy of Dr. Saf 
ford will be fulfilled, and a Norwich Cadet become a tenanl 
of the White House for at least four years. It is certainly 
time that Vermont should have a chance to try housekeep 
ing there, 

THE END, 



RARE BOOK 
COLLECTION 




THE LIBRARY OF THE 

UNIVERSITY OF 

NORTH CAROLINA 

AT 

CHAPEL HILL 



Wi lmer 
1143 
c. 2